A 7-year-old pug made like Lassie and helped save her best friend — a cat — from drowning in an iced-over koi pond in Billings, Mont.
Chloe and her feline friend, a Siamese named Willow, eat together and snooze together. Chloe “puts up with” Willow’s attempts to groom her. And in the morning, they often join their owner when she walks outside to pick up the morning newspaper.
On a recent chilly morning, Chloe came back in with Amanda Bjelland, but Willow stayed outside to have her usual morning adventures.
Shortly after, Chloe started barking at the glass door to the back yard. Bjelland let her out, but she came back and continued barking for 15 minutes. So Bjelland finally decided to see what all the barking was about.
Chloe ran to the family’s koi pond with Bjelland at her heels. The Dickinson Press describes the scene they found:
The cat had fallen through the ice that covered the 5-by-9-foot fish pond except for a hole in the center kept open to allow gasses to escape from the koi habitat. The cat was churning with her front paws but couldnt escape the frigid 3-foot-deep waters.
Shaking, shivering and meowing, Willow was pulled from the pond, then rushed to the house to be warmed up.
The Bjellands later found rabbit tracks near the pond, so Willow may have been stalking a rascally rabbit when she stopped paying attention to her footing.
Bjelland estimates Willow was in the pond for about 20 minutes. It’s a miracle she made it. Maybe she put up such a fight against the odds because she knew her best friend was trying to rally help.
The Bjellands are working to make their pond safer. Chloe is being lauded as a first-rate hero in her home, and even got a bone to boot. Willow is recovering nicely.
Good dog, Chloe.