Dog owner, Sebastian, Remi (the dog) and the response crew involved in the rescue. Image courtesy Ajax.

Firemen rescue geese-chasing Remi from icy pond

Ajax Fire (AFES) is warning residents of the dangers of open waterways after a dog fell through an ice-covered pond, as well as two teens who also fell through the ice on a retention pond.

On February 25 afternoon, Ajax Fire crews responded to the report of an ice water rescue at a local golf course.

The owner, Sebastian, stated their dog, Remi, was chasing geese when entering the water and had been in there for eight minutes. The dog was approximately 35-feet offshore with every part of its body submerged except for its head, said a town statement.

With proper back up in place, an AFES firefighter entered the water and made their way to the dog. The pond was approximately four feet deep. The firefighter successfully collared the dog, and it was pulled to shore.

The dog was medically assessed by firefighters on shore and was reunited with its owner.

On February 26 afternoon, Ajax Fire and Emergency Services responded to an ice water rescue where two persons had fallen through ice while on a retention pond. No injuries were reported, but the two individuals were taken to hospital for observation (see story below).

“Thankfully both incidents had a happy ending, and the dog, residents and fire crews are safe. Pet owners should remember to always keep their pets on a leash because even the best trained dog may not respond to recall when its instincts/prey drive kicks in. We also remind people that no ice is safe ice. Stay away from all open waterways,” said Shelley Langer, Ajax Fire Prevention Inspector.

Two 14-year olds rescued after they fell through thin ice

Meanwhile, Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) also issued a safety reminder. “Many lakes and streams are not completely frozen and not safe to travel on even with some recent cold weather. Remember, no ice or body of water is ever entirely safe.”

DRPS Ice Safety Tips

Ajax Safety Tips:

  • Keep family and pets away from the edges of all bodies of water.
  • When walking your dog, please always keep them safe on a leash.
  • Do not attempt to walk on ice-covered water bodies.
  • Avoid walking close to/across riverbanks and ice-covered water to prevent falling through. Riverbanks can become unstable in the spring due to snowmelt and erosion.
  • Rescuing another person or a pet from ice is dangerous. If you see anyone that has fallen through the ice call 9-1-1 for help immediately.
  • Obey any safety signage that has been posted.

Quick Facts

  • No ice is without risk. Even thick ice may be weak if it has frozen and thawed repeatedly.
  • Most drownings occur in water less than 20 degrees Celsius.
  • Cold weather doesn’t guarantee the ice will be solid and safe. A sudden drop in air temperature can create cracks in the ice.
  • Snow does not strengthen the ice. It acts as an insulating blanket and can hinder ice formation.
Remi, the rescued dog


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