A man and his dog were rescued in the Alps on Thursday after spending seven days stranded in the cold following a fall.
The 33-year-old man from Trieste, northeast Italy, was reported missing by his girlfriend on Wednesday evening.
He had set off several days earlier with his dog to make an annual hiking trip in the Alps and was scheduled to return home on Monday.
Rescuers from the region's Alpine and Speleological Rescue Corps (CNAS) set off by helicopter on Thursday morning and found him near Forcella Tacia, a pass in the Venzonassa Valley, after spotting "a metallic flash".
This "turned out to be a thermal cover, and not far away, about a hundred metres away, the young man was spotted lying on the ground near the forest trail," the CNAS said on Facebook.
He had suffered a broken ankle and had several other injuries after falling several metres down a gully, but had managed to drag himself close to a water stream. There he spent "seven nights in the mountains in the cold, injured," CNAS said.
To keep warm, he had covered himself in leaves as well as his topographic map and he also relied on "the company of his little dog", Ash, to survive, CNAS said. Still, "he was thirsty and hungry".