A frightened dog hampered attempts to rescue its owner after they both slipped and fell down a waterfall at Ecclesbourne Glen near Hastings.
The BBC reports that rescue teams called to the scene on Monday evening were prevented from getting to the injured man.
Both he and the dog had fallen down the waterfall but the animal would not let anyone help them.
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said on its blog that Dover Coastguard arranged for two dog handlers to be transferred to the scene.
Dog handlers were able to safely remove the animal from the location, enabling the man to be airlifted to hospital.
Dover Senior Watch Manager Gordon Wise said: 'We always encourage members of the public to keep dogs on leads when walking. This was an extremely unusual rescue.
'The rescue helicopter had to wait for the dog to be removed before the casualty could be recovered. The casualty is now receiving medical treatment and the dog has been reunited with the casualty's partner.'
The man had a suspected broken leg and head injuries.
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