Loudoun emergency crews this morning rescued a cocker spaniel that fell through ice on a pond in Ashburn.
A caller reported the incident at 7:30 a.m. Crews from Ashburn, Moorefield, Leesburg, and Sterling responded to the pond on Windmill Drive.
The dog, Tootsie, was about 60 feet from shore and appeared to be in extreme distress.
Two firefighters trained as ice rescue technicians went into action. They donned ice rescue suits, and one entered the water while the other remained on shore to provide assistance. Within minutes the dog was safe on shore—frightened but unharmed. Two firefighters suffered minor bite injuries and were transported to the hospital as a precaution.
Representatives of the Department of Fire, Rescue and Emergency Services highlighted that the incident serves as a reminder to be careful around frozen waterways. Residents—and pets—should not attempt to walk on to a frozen pond, stream, lake, river or pool. In the case of a similar emergency, witnesses should not attempt a rescue but should call 9-1-1 immediately and stay away from the ice. Attempting to rescue a person or animal before emergency personnel arrive only creates an additional life-threatening emergency.