Husky Dog Rescued From Icy River

Photos by Harlem-Roscoe Fire Photographer Sheryl Drost

January 13, 2010

Three local agencies teamed up to sucessfully rescue a dog from the icy Rock River on January 13. A resident on Harbor Oaks Drive in Machesney Park found that a white Husky had fallen into the Rock River behind her home and was desperately struggling to climb back up onto a ice shelf about 10 -12 feet from the shore. The dog was fighting against the swift current full of ice chunks.

Winnebago County Animal Control, Winnebago County Sheriff''s Department and Harlem-Roscoe Fire were all dispatched to the scene to help with the rescue. The nearly frozen Husky definitely had a will to live as it clenched on to a rope thrown by one of the Animal Control Officers. The officer was then able to throw a noose around the dog's neck, but the dog was too tired to pull itself up onto the thin ice shelf.

A Harlem-Roscoe Firefighter in a cold water survival suit attached by safety ropes was then able to belly crawl out to rescue the dog. Firefighters then pulled both the firefighter and the exhausted dog to shore.

Animal Control Officers and a Harlem-Roscoe Fire Paramedic immediately started drying and warming the animal with blankets. Animal Control Officers transported him to a nearby immediate care veterinary clinic. The dog had been in the cold water for over an hour, but it was still fighting to live.

Last reports are that the male Husky is recovering from it's frigid ordeal and his owners have been located.

The Husky's teeth still clenched onto the rescue rope even after he was safely on shore.