Firefighters in Alpena, Michigan, went above and beyond to save a dog from drowning in an icy river Friday.
“A pair of huskies were playing on the ice on the Thunder Bay River off of Long Rapids Road when one of them fell through thin ice and into the frigid water,” the Alpena News reported.
A person who saw the pup trying to stay afloat called 911 and emergency crews from the Alpena Township north-side fire station responded to the scene.
“Fire Chief Bill Forbush said the call came in at 2:34 p.m. When firefighters arrived, one dog was in the water and another on the ice near it,” the News article said.
Firefighter Chris Morrison went into the water, broke a path through the ice, and eventually made it to the dog.
“Just before he got to the dog, it gave out a crying type howl and as soon as he grabbed it, it went completely limp from exhaustion,” the Alpena City Firefighters L623 said in a Facebook post.
Video footage showed Morrison holding the frightened pup as crew members pulled them both to shore with a safety rope:
It’s not always humans we’re called to save. Sometimes it’s mans best friend.Today we responded to an ice rescue of a…
In a tweet Saturday, the News shared a photo of the crew members with the dog:
— The Alpena News (@TheAlpenaNews) January 9, 2021
First responders also rescued the other pup that did not fall through the ice, according to WBKB.
“The two dogs got to warm up in one of the ambulances before being turned over to Alpena County Animal Control. Forbush said the dogs didn’t have any tags on them, but a neighbor in the area may have known who the dog’s owner was,” the News article continued.
Forbush also told the newspaper many people do not realize how often firefighters and police officers are called upon to rescue animals.
“It is an important service we offer, because, if we don’t do it, someone else who is untrained and doesn’t have the proper equipment is going to try to go get the animals,” he explained, adding, “That can cause serious injuries to them, or even a loss of life.”