FAIRFIELD, Conn., Dec. 20 (UPI) -- Firefighters in Connecticut rescued a 19-year-old dog who stranded herself out of her owner's reach on the ice of a frozen pond.
The Fairfield Fire Department said crews responded Monday morning to an ice-covered pond where a 19-year-old shepherd mix named Delilah was reported to be stranded out on the ice.
The canine's owner said Delilah seemed unable to walk back across the ice and he was unable to reach the dog.
Firefighter Rob Petrie said the ice instantly broke when he tried to step on it, leading the rescuers to obtain a rescue stick from an animal control officer.
The firefighters were able to use the stick to pull Delilah to safety.
"This is a perfect example of how the system should work," said Assistant Chief George Gomola, the incident commander. "The dog's owner fought his natural instinct to self-rescue his dog and called 911 for help. Our firefighters used their training and special equipment to quickly and safety rescue Delilah."
"If the owner had attempted the rescue himself and fallen through the ice, the end result could have been tragic. At the very least, it would have delayed the rescue of the dog because our priority would have been to rescue the owner. This is the season for thin ice and animal rescue. We urge parents to talk with their children about ice safety and to immediately activate the 911 emergency systems if a pet or a loved one falls through the ice."