Mass. Firefighters Aid Dog Near Reservoir

The Great Pyrenees made it off the ice, but got caught in brush.

Feb. 06--A Gloucester family is breathing a sigh of relief after its beloved dog survived a fall through the ice Wednesday on Babson Reservoir.

Lisa Schott and her 12-year-old son Noah were sledding in the fresh snow on a small hill near the reservoir in the early afternoon when Cooper, their 2-year-old Great Pyrenees, ran out onto the snow-covered reservoir. The ice was very thin.

"The next thing I know," Schott said, "I heard splashing in the water and saw his little head bobbing in the water."

Cooper is a disabled dog, rescued from Tennessee and adopted by the Schott family last year. He was born with extremely weak hind legs. Schott said she didn't know whether Cooper could even swim. "I was terrified," she said.

With no cellphone with her, Schott decided to run home to nearby Russell Avenue and call 911. She told Noah to stay on the shore and keep watch over Cooper while she ran to call for help. She estimated that about 15 minutes passed before she made the call and returned to the lake to see the dog pulling himself up onto the ice with his front paws.

Schott then called to Cooper, but he was frightened and ran off. She later caught up to the traumatized dog when he became tangled in brambles. It was then that Gloucester police and firefighters arrived and helped them out of the forest where they were reunited with Noah.

Schott expressed her deep sense of gratitude to the fire department rescue squad and police officers who rushed to Cooper's aid. Police officer Scott Duffany even gave the dog a teddy bear, which Cooper gladly clamped in his mouth.

"It was a very close call," said Schott. "I thought he was dead."

On Wednesday evening, with Cooper asleep on the living room floor, Lisa and Noah Schott were greatly relieved after their scare.

"We're all holding each other close," Lisa Schott said.

Mike Springer can be reached at 978-675-2705.

Copyright 2014 - Gloucester Daily Times, Mass.