We Are Herriman: Nicole Petersen

Rescued Dog

February 2021

Preparing for work and feeling the heavy weight of new, significant life challenges, Nicole Petersen decided that, despite the cold, she needed to get outside.

It was January 14th, and as she drove by the Cove Pond, she noticed a police officer repeatedly throwing a rope into the water. Looking closer, she could see an Australian Shepherd struggling in the ice-cold pond. As Herriman City Animal Services arrived and further attempts kept falling short, time was running out. Nicole went for it. She crawled out onto the ice, despite the officer’s pleas to stop. Further attempts to reach the dog fell short. The ice eventually broke, sinking Nicole into the frigid water. While others’ attention turned to Nicole, she had other plans. She was already in the water, and she was going to save the dog.

Eventually reaching the lifeless dog, getting back to the shore became increasingly difficult. “This is too hard,” Nicole thought, “but I’m not going to let the dog go.” Eventually, she found the strength to get them both to safety. Animal Services rushed the dog to a veterinarian clinic while Nicole was tended to.

Both have made a full recovery and are doing well. Through this experience, Nicole has been given strength. “[Rescuing the dog] showed me that I’m a lot stronger physically and mentally than I thought I was and that I can do anything,” Nicole explained. “Not only did I save her—she saved me.”

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