UPS driver strips to boxers and dives into icy water to save dog from drowning
Just before Christmas, UPS driver Ryan Arens was delivering packages on his route, when he heard the sound of a dog in distress. The sun was setting in Bozeman, Montana, so it was difficult exactly where those frantic yelps were coming from. After driving to the other side of the pond, he discovered a disturbing scene. "This dog was screaming and crying and going crazy," Arens told the Great Falls Tribune. "I could see the dog trapped about 10-15 feet off of shore, with ice all around it."
On the pond, an older man in a rowboat was attempting to rescue the dog by chipping away the ice. However, he wasn't having much luck. Animal control officers were on the way, but there guarantee the dog would last long. So, Arens, a lifelong animal lover, decided to take a break from his route and take action. "I stripped to my boxers and got the guy out of the boat," he said. "Then, I slid the boat out onto the ice, using it to distribute my weight. I shimmed out to where the ice was thin."
The boat busted through the thin ice, and Arens fell into the freezing 16-feet-deep water. The dog was starting to go under, but he reached her in the nick of time, grabbing onto her collar. With the dog safely in his hand, he swam for thee shore, where the older man from the rowboat handed him a blanket. "We took the dog inside the older guy's house and got in the shower together to warm up," said Arens.
After that perilous adventure, Arens suffered some cuts to his leg, and some people would use that as an excuse to spend the night sitting in a hot bath. But nope, he got right back up and finished his route, delivering 20 more packages. (UPS, can you give this man a raise, please?) "Animals are my weakness," Arens explained, adding that this dramatic rescue was the highlight of his fourteen years working for UPS. (Now we know what brown can do for you!)
Later, the good samaritan happened to have a delivery scheduled for the dog owner's house. As he pulled up the driveway, he noticed that dog, a 2.5 year old wirehaired pointing griffon named Sadie, was sitting in the man's pickup. "She was freaking out, and when he let her out she ran to me," said Arens. "She must have remembered me. It sure made me feel good. This dog had a whole lot of life left in her, and I'm really glad I was able to act when I did. She's a sweetheart."
At home, Aren has a 14.5-year-old Malamute/shepherd, whom you can see in the above photo.
This event was a close call for both man and dog, but the internet agrees it was worth the risk. UPS Dogs shared the story on its Facebook page, and viewers praised Aren for the selfless rescue. "Helps the elderly gentleman, saves the pup and then finishes his route," commented one Facebook user. "I guess on weekends he leaps tall buildings in a single bound."