Firefighters from Tatamagouche responded to a call of a dog stranded on the ice in Tatamagouche Bay and safely rescued Lizzie. Submitted photo

Lizzie didn’t let a little adventure that saw her end up on the ice in the bay keep her down.

The 10-month-old border collie, belonging to Gillian and John Crawford at Lismore Sheep Farm in River John, was back to her usual self within hours of being rescued by firefighters.

“You’d never know she had been gone for two days,” said Gillian. “She was happy to see us and happy to be home. She slept for a few hours, but the next day she was back to her old self.”

Like she normally does, Lizzie went to the barn with John on the morning of March 21. When he finished at the barn, he didn’t see the dog, but didn’t think anything of it.

Later that day, Lizzie still hadn’t showed up at the house, so Gillian and John went around the property calling her.

“It was a beautiful, calm morning,” said Gillian. “John went out on the four-wheeler to look for her. Then we thought maybe she’d gone across the road.”

The couple jumped in the vehicle to go search for the pup, including looking in ditches in case she’d been hit by a vehicle.

Then, they took to social media, posting to numerous sites such as the Nova Scotia Lost Dog Network, SPCA, and local veterinarian clinics.

That night, a winter storm rolled through the area, but the Crawfords still didn’t give up hope.

And it was two days later they got the call they were wanting.

“We couldn’t believe it,” said Gillian.

They received a call from the Tim Horton Children’s Camp, 18 kilometres away along the North Shore. Lizzie was found out on the ice.

“I asked if they were sure it was her, and they were,” Gillian said, adding the picture they had uploaded to social media was matched with the dog found out on the ice.

At first, Gillian said they didn’t realize Lizzie was stuck on the ice. They just thought their dog had been out on the ice, and came into land. But that wasn’t the case.

“It wasn’t until they called back a second time we realized the fire department had rescued her.”

She credits Erin Thomson, the camp’s general manager, for making a call to the fire department. Ten members responded to the call, and inflated a boat to make the rescue.

“The support from everyone was incredible,” said Gillian. “From the village of River John, people asking, ‘did you find your dog?’ to the Tim Hortons camp staff who noticed her, and the fire department. We’re so appreciative.”

Lizzie was born on the farm – her mother is the other border collie they own – and Gillian said it was the first time the pup had wandered off. They have two guard dogs, whom the Crawfords know roam at night, but she said the border collies don’t.

“Being 10 months old, that had us worried as well,” Gillian said.

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Raissa Tetanish
Raissa Tetanish is the editor of the Tatamagouche Light. She has more than 12 years experience as a reporter, with a background in both photography and photojournalism. She can be reached at 902-305-6177, or raissatetanish@tatamagouchelight.com.