BRUNSWICK — A Brunswick police lieutenant buckled on Crampon ice stabilizers Thursday morning and headed over an embankment on Mere Point to save a Lhasa Apso dog that slid down a hill to the edge of the icy bay.
Wendy Ponte called police at 8:46 a.m. Thursday after her elderly rescue dog, Pops, disappeared after she let him out.
“He always stays around the car,” she said, but on Thursday, Ponte popped back into the house for just a minute and then couldn’t find Pops when she emerged. Then she glimpsed the tiny dog at the edge of Maquoit Bay. He apparently slid down her icy front lawn and over a 20-foot embankment.
“I was afraid [Pops] was going to break through,” Ponte said of thin ice near the edge of the bay.
Ponte called 911, and Lt. Todd Ridlon arrived.
Ridlon called the department’s Special Response Team to bring rescue and climbing gear. Before they arrived, however, Ridlon climbed over the embankment to retrieve the dog, Brunswick Police Detective Sgt. Marty Rinaldi said.
“If Todd had lost his footing, he would have been in the water,” Rinaldi said.
The dog had wandered farther out onto the ice, but Ridlon was able to collect it in his police jacket and carry the pooch up the embankment to the house, according to Animal Control Officer Heidi Nelson.
“Bless their hearts,” Ponte said Thursday. “He’s holding this wriggly, biting dog and trying to watch where he’s walking, but my god, he did it, bless his heart.”
Neither Ridlon nor Pops were injured.
“He went right to his bed and conked out,” Ponte said of Pops. “But he’s fine.”