Ewing Township animal control officer Richard Hutchinson said he and colleague Mark Phillips responded Sunday afternoon to the river near the Trenton side of the Calhoun Street Bridge on a report of a dog trapped on a frozen section of the water, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported Monday.
"He was about 200 yards out, and we were throwing hot dogs to him and whistling, but he wouldn't come," Hutchinson said.
Hutchinson said Trenton police and firefighters arrived on the scene and advised rescuers not to go out in the ice.
However, shelter volunteer Russ Miller arrived on the scene with a kayak after authorities left, and he and witness Ciro Silvestri slid the kayak across the ice to reach the dog.
"When you're an animal lover, you feel you have to do the right thing," Hutchinson said.
The 85-pound mastiff's family identified him from video of the rescue on the evening news, Hutchinson said. He said the dog would return home following a veterinary examination Monday.