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Dog saved after his icy plunge at Corsham
A three-legged dog escaped death following a dramatic rescue after he fell through the frozen lake at Corsham Court recently.
Eight-year-old German shorthaired pointer Louis plummeted through the ice into the freezing water around 30 metres from the lakeside, after being let off his lead in the park and chasing the ducks out onto the ice.
Kady Chatman, 30, who was walking her pet with her two children, three-year-old Toby, and two-year-old Isla, watched in horror as Louis fell into the water and struggled to get out.
Mrs Chatman, of West Park, said: “There was no way he could get out, the first time he couldn’t push himself up I knew he wouldn’t be able to.
“Missing one of his back legs he just couldn’t get out and when he realised that he started to try bite through the ice which didn’t work either.
“I immediately called for the fire service and while we waited for them to arrive I just kept trying to encourage him to keep going. I’m so proud that throughout the 30-minute ordeal he never gave up actively trying to get out of the water.”
A fire crew from Corsham and a water rescue crew from Chippenham used an inflatable walkway to reach Louis, as well as chipping away at the ice.
Corsham watch manager Martin Hancock said: “I didn’t think he was going to last much longer. The dog was trying his hardest to keep going but he was freezing and I think waiting another five or 10 minutes might have been crucial for him.”
After being saved from the water Louis, who had his back right leg amputated two years ago after persistent cruciate ligament problems, was taken to Hale vets in Corsham to be checked over.
Mrs Chatman said: “The vets were a little concerned he might have frost bite in his joints, but since we’ve got him home he’s been fine. I’m so thankful to everyone.
“Once you have a pet for a number of years they are well and truly part of the family and I felt like one of my children had been saved. I’d like to thank the emergency services who risked their lives to save Louis.
“They were also so helpful doing the little things once he was out of the water, as well as the vets, who were great, and two ladies passing by, Sue and Sam, who were really supportive to me in a time of need.
“It has shown what a great community Corsham has. It is nice to think that from an horrific incident that there was a happy ending.”
Mrs Chatman said Louis was now back to normal and was being kept on his lead when out for a walk.
Mr Hancock said: “My advice to dog owners would be to keep their pets on a lead during bad weather to avoid incidents like this happening. When dogs are running around they get over-excited and won’t be aware of the potential dangers around them.”