Huckleberry, a nine-year-old golden retriever, was certainly happy when Connecticut's Westport Fire Department rescued him from an icy pond near Hales Road on Wednesday morning. A fireman donned his ice rescue suit, and with a safety rope was able swim to the dog and lift the exhausted canine out of the water and carry him back to the safety of the shore.
According to nbcNewYork.com, Huckleberry was transported to Shulhof Animal Hospital where he recuperated quickly and was reported to be doing fine.
The WestportNow.com identified the fireman as Tobia Ostapchuk, who besides stating that it was his turn to go into the icy water to save the dog, Ostapchuk is also an animal lover. He knew a dog had fallen through the ice, but at the time wasn't sure if there was a human involved since it isn't uncommon for an owner to try and save their pet when something like this happens.
Luckily, Huckleberry was rescued without too much trouble, and Ostapchuk said it was just part of his job, however he did state:
"A dog is a member of the family. When you go to the water rescue you know there’s a dog in the water, but you don’t know if a person will be in the water too from the time we’re called until we get there."
Police and firemen warn people to keep their dogs on leashes while out for walks. It is just too easy for a dog to wander onto the ice and then for a tragedy to occur. If a pet does fall through the ice, do not attempt to wander out onto the ice. You could be the next victim. Call 911, and let the professionals help.
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