Three construction workers in Estonia got a big surprise recently when they discovered the “dog” they rescued from a frozen lake was actually a wolf.
The story was first posted on the Eestimaa Loomakaitse Liit Facebook page, and the details they provided are pretty incredible. The photos, too. Once you see them, you won’t blame the construction workers for mistaking the wild animal for a pup.
The image above is where it all began — the icy Pärnu River in Estonia. Construction workers Rando Kartsepp, Robin Sillamäe, and Erki Väli were working near the Sindi Dam doing dredging (cleaning rubbish out of the bed of the river) when they first noticed the animal. It was what appeared to them at the time, a dog, trapped in the middle of the river near the dam.
As the river was partially frozen, the animal was swimming around but unable to make it to the shore because of the ice.
After seeing this, the workers knew what they had to do. The three men worked to clear a path in the ice so the animal was able to get to dry land. When they finally got it out of the water, it was absolutely exhausted and covered in icicles.
Suffering from severe hypothermia, the men immediately wrapped the animal in a towel and took it into their car to transport to the vet.
“We had to carry him over the slope. He weighed a fair bit,” Kartsepp told the Postimees, an Estonian newspaper.
Little did they know at the time, but they were actually transporting a wolf with them and not a dog.
“He was calm, slept on my legs. When I wanted to stretch them, he raised his head for a moment,” said Kartsepp.
Although, nothing more happened besides the wolf giving a slight glance at Kartsepp. It was still in total shock from the icy water.
Only after arriving at the vet clinic did they finally realize the animal was actually a wolf, although it wasn’t the veterinarians who made the confirmation, it was actually a local hunter.
While the veterinarians had their suspicions of the “dog”, the hunter took one look and instantly knew. He had been dealing with the animals of the area for a long time, and this one was a young male wolf, about one-year-old.
Upon learning this, they decided to house the wolf in a cage… just to be on the safe side.
No one was really sure how it would act once it regained its energy again.
“At first, he was so done in for he didn’t resist at all. We simply kept him in this room. But once he started to get an idea of the situation, I felt things might quickly take a turn for the dangerous. We got him into a cage,” the head of the clinic, Tarvo Markson said.
Luckily, the animal recovered quickly and within a day it was back to normal.
The Estonian Union for Protection of Animals (EUPA) paid the vet bill.
After veterinarians gave the go-ahead, the EUPA fitted the wolf with a radio GPS tracker and took it back to the wild to be released.
“We are so happy for the outcome of the story, and wish to thank all the participants – especially these men who rescued the wolf and the doctors of the clinic who were not afraid to treat and nurture the wild animal,” EUPA said.
The wild wolf was very lucky that day to be rescued by the construction workers. There’s no doubt that things could have easily turned out much, much worse.
See the original Facebook Story below.
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"SINDI JÕEST PÄÄSTETUD NOOR VÕSAVILLEM"Tänane hommik tõi Eestimaa Loomakaitse Liidule kõne, mida juba iga päev ei…