Early morning rescue on Lake Zumbro saves a small dog - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Early morning rescue on Lake Zumbro saves a small dog


NEAR MAZEPPA, Minn. (KTTC) -- It was a close call Tuesday morning on Lake Zumbro, as one heroic man saved his small dog after it fell into open water.

Karen Popp and Mike Hart live on Lake Zumbro. Less than a month ago they adopted 4-year old Casey, a Jack Russell Terrier.The dog was born and raised in Arizona and the couple says Casey wasn't use to the snow or ice. While chasing birds, Casey fell into the lake.

It all began Tuesday morning when their dog, Casey was playing out in the yard. Karen told us her niece saw him suddenly take off down the lakefront steps. Frantically, the family searched for Casey and finally spotted him with binoculars. He was flailing in the lake, trying to swim in the dangerously cold waters. Karen said she didn't know what to do.

"Just looking around for resources, people, ropes, boats. I got on the phone with 911 and they dispatched the fire department and I'm teetering, at what to do at that point," explained Karen.

 Mike, Karen's boyfriend, knew he had to do something to save Casey. He grabbed his kayak and set off.

"I had to actually take the ore in half and use it to push myself across the snow about 6-12 inches at a time, until I got out about 200 yards where he was located in the water, just kind of laying there looking at me, not really trying to fight anymore," said Mike.

Casey was in the water for more than 15 minutes before being rescued. Mike said Casey was suffering from hypothermia when he was pulled from the frigid water. Mike wrapped his jacket around Casey until they got to shore and could get him bathed in warm water. Casey's wagging tail is evidence enough to prove he's recovering from the near death experience.


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