The winter season is approaching quickly. The weather is already changing, and a number of places are seeing weather cold enough to freeze over small bodies of water.
Every year, authorities warn the public of the dangers of walking on thin ice, but at least a few accidents are inevitable.
The Saskatchewan fire department is accustomed to making rescues. With frigid temperatures and icy conditions every year, they are well-versed in cold weather rescues. But that doesn’t make it any less challenging, or miraculous, whenever they’re called to action to save a life.
After getting a call that a dog had fallen through a thin layer of ice, the fire department mobilized for the rescue.
Rescue attempts had to move quickly. The dog had already been in the freezing water for approximately 30 minutes. There were concerns over how much longer it could survive.
The entire rescue attempt was captured on video. A firefighter, outfitted in a rubber suit that will keep him dry if he also falls through the ice, slides out on his belly to the stranded dog. The fireman is attached to a rope, which is being held by members of his team who are still on solid land.
While trying to pull the dog out of the water, the fireman briefly falls into the water as well.
However, the fireman was able to regain control, lift the dog out of the water, and start making his way back to the land. The members of his team pulled on the rope to bring him back, while the dog tried to get his footing on the slick ice.
Once the dog reached land, the team tried to put a warm blanket on him. But the dog seemed to have a different idea.
His back legs numb and frozen, he struggled to use them to walk. But that didn’t stop him from climbing up the hill to where his owners were. As the firefighters continued to try and drape a blanket over him, he hobbled into the loving arms of the family who had feared the worst.
“He wants to come see Ma and Pa,” says a man whose voice can be heard in the video.
Fire department chief Denis Pilon wants to use the video to remind pet owners and parents to keep their precious ones off the ice.
Pilon shared the video of the rescue on his Facebook page. Along with the footage, he attached a statement urging responsible adults to: “Please keep your pets and children away from the Creek, the ice is thin and it is NOT safe.”
The dog is expected to be just fine and regained feeling in its legs after it warmed up and got some rest. The pooch allowed the rescue team to cover him in multiple blankets and jackets once he was reunited with his owners again.