UPS driver conquers cold lake to save a puppy caught in the ice

UPS driver with rescued dog
Ryan Arens and Sadie

BOZEMAN, Mont. — Ryan Arens was out delivering packages in Bozeman, Montana, when he drove up to a house and heard a dog inside “shouting and crying and going insane.”

The sun was starting to go down and he didn’t see anything, so he headed to the opposite side of the lake.

“I could see the poor thing was caught around 10-15 feet off of shore, with ice surrounding it,” he told the Great Falls Tribune.

An elderly man was in a paddle boat on the lake attempting break through the ice to pull the dog from the water.

“I took off all of my clothes except my underwear and got the older guy out of the boat. At that point, I slid the boat out onto the ice, using it to help keep my weight well-distributed,” Arens said.

At that point he smashed through the ice, tumbling from the boat and into the icy waters over 16-feet-deep.

Now that he was already wet, Arens decided to swim for the dog.

“She was starting to look like she might not make it,” he said.

He grabbed her by the neck and swam for the ice, sliding the dog across the surface of the lake and back onto dry land. He hauled himself out of the water and an onlooker gave him a blanket to start warming up.

Arens completed his course after the local police department and animal control arrived. He delivered another twenty packages that day.

It wasn’t more than a few days later that Arens happened to have a package for the dog’s owner. As he strolled up, he saw the dog he had rescued, Sadie.

“She was going nuts, and when he let her out she raced to me,” he said. “She probably remembered me. What an incredible feeling!”

“How can you not love dogs,” he included. “This has got to be the best thing that’s happened to me in over fourteen years on the job.”

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