Firefighters warn pet owners of ‘soft ice’ after dogs fall into icy ponds

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INDIANAPOLIS – As temperatures go back and forth this time of year, firefighters want pet owners to watch their animals more closely to keep them from falling into icy ponds.

Three dogs were rescued in Indianapolis Tuesday, including a 2-year-old pit bull mix who got away from her home and wandered onto a thawing pond where she fell in.

Her owner, JoAnn Woodard was so scared, she was ready to jump in and rescue Goldie herself.

“I didn’t know what would happen to her if she didn’t get out in time,” she said.

Firefighters are glad she didn’t. A crew from the Wayne Township Fire Department showed up and rescued Goldie.

Firefighter Nolan Bastien went into the water.

“I just reached in and grabbed her. Luckily she was nice.”

This time of year is especially dangerous as temperatures shift back and forth from freezing.

“In Indiana we have terrible ice, because it thaws, it freezes, it thaws… So a few days ago we were at eight inches thickness in many ponds and today we may be a couple of inches,” explained Captain Mike Pruitt, spokesman for Wayne Township Fire.

Firefighters will not only go after pets, but also wild animals. Pruitt said they put their lives at risk, so someone else doesn’t jump in and create a worse situation.

“We know if we don’t do something then someone will take action to try to rescue that animal. And when that happens we’re gonna have a bigger problem on our hands,” said Pruitt.

Woodard said she’d be watching Goldie a lot more closely and is grateful to everyone who helped save her.

“You know I really appreciate everything that they’ve done. I really do,” said Woodard.

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