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Jan 12, 2017 5:13 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Bridgehampton Firefighter Rescues Candace Bushnell's Dog From Icy Pond

Firefighters with one of the dogs that were involved in a water rescue at Sagg Pond on Wednesday.  DANA SHAW
Jan 16, 2017 12:11 PM

Christian Topping, a volunteer with the Bridgehampton Fire Department, was driving near Sagg Pond last week when he heard an animal yelping and the distant cries of a woman.

The woman turned out to be Candace Bushnell, writer of the popular “Sex and the City” series, and the owner of an adventurous poodle who had fallen through melting ice in the pond about 200 yards from shore. Ms. Bushnell, who has not been identified by authorities but posted about the ordeal on her Instagram account, had tried to retrieve her dog herself but also fell through the ice; she was able to make it back to shore, however.

Mr. Topping, who had just returned from a duck hunting trip and had waders in his car, immediately put them on and tried to walk across the thinning ice but kept falling through himself, ending up in the waist-high water. After a few minutes, he said, he located a kayak and was able to use it to reach the dog, whose hindquarter was still submerged in the chilly water.

He was able to reunite with Ms. Bushnell with her beloved dog Pepper a few minutes later.

“He was frozen,” Mr. Topping said when reached on Thursday, January 12, a day after the incident. “His hind end was frozen when I got him out of the hole and he was struggling to stand up, so I wrapped him in my sweater and got him on the seat of the kayak because it was full of snow.”

According to Southampton Town Police Lieutenant Susan Ralph, both Pepper and a second dog were taken to the South Fork Animal Hospital in Wainscott for evaluation.

Ms. Bushnell was transported by ambulance to Southampton Hospital for evaluation after falling through the ice. Mr. Topping did not require medical treatment.

“Thank you thank you to everyone who helped rescue Pepper from the icy depths of Sagaponic [sic] Pond,” Ms. Bushnell posted on social media last week. “Both dogs are home and fine thanks to the quick work of a few real heroes!”

Town Police, Southampton Town bay constables, the Bridgehampton Fire Department and Animal Control all responded to the scene.

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