Helping a creature in need can be a tricky situation. Sometimes people find animals who are so hurt, or in such danger, that there’s simply no time to try to get help from animal rescue experts. In times like these, there’s almost no choice but to improvise to save the creature’s life!
That seemed to be the case when Crystal Kelley, a resident of Indianapolis, Indiana, noticed an unfortunate creature suffering in her yard. What she did in her desperate attempt to keep him alive may have seemed odd, but it was a stroke of genius!
During one particularly snowy day in January 2016, Indianapolis, Indiana resident Crystal Kelley sent her little Yorkshire terrier, Lily, out into the back yard of her home to play and explore. While it began like any ordinary winter day for the pair, it would soon take an unexpected turn.
Crystal Eve Kelley / Facebook
Many dogs love playing in the snow, because it’s such a unique environment for them to enjoy, but it wasn’t long before Crystal noticed something distracting Lily, even by the standards of such easily distracted animals.
It was a bird, and the poor creature didn’t seem well. But naturally, Crystal’s most immediate concern was the health and safety of her and her furry friend. “Lily, you leave the birdie alone,” she said firmly. “You need to come inside.”
Yet it soon became clear that the bird was in more immediate trouble. The poor creature was covered in ice so thoroughly that he was lying completely motionless, his wings frozen solid to his body.
Crystal had to think quickly to help the bird as well as she could. Luckily, she was very crafty, and was prepared to use all her resources to help the little creature. She put him in a bowl and covered him with a blanket as she developed her plan.
Crystal had little expertise to speak of when it came to animal rescues, but she was determined to do whatever she could to help revive the suffering bird before it was too late. To that end, she brought out a hair dryer and decided to warm the little guy up!
There was no question that Crystal’s idea in that challenging moment was an unusual one, but she knew she had to try her best to do whatever she could to save the poor creature’s life.
If Crystal had simply done nothing, as many other folks in the same boat likely would have, that very well may have spelled the end of the line for the bird anyway. She couindeeld have even ignored the bird and let her dog continue to play. But with a life on the line, it must have seemed like there was nothing to lose.
Little by little, with the way that the frozen bird was literally defrosting, it seemed that there might have been some hope for him yet, but it would take some time before she’d know whether he’d be okay.
At the same time, with the bird and the bowl just outside the back door of her house, and the hairdryer plugged in, Crystal had to be cautious as she thawed the injured bird out of the danger he had found himself in.
Initially, it didn’t seem to be working. “I didn’t put the blow dryer on high and warm him up too quickly,” she clarified in the description for the YouTube video she posted. With a little patience—and a low heat setting—something special happened.
As the ice gradually melted, the bird started showing definitive signs of life. In time, he even started fidgeting and trying to maneuver his body towards the source of the much-needed warmth.
More and more, the bird started to display signs of improvement, and two hours after Crystal had initially started trying to warm him up, he finally started moving his wings, a sure sign that he still had some fight left in him.
Amazingly, the bird began stretching his legs, then before she knew it, he was happily hopping around the ground. It was as if he couldn’t handle his excitement after Crystal gave him a new lease on life!
Yet one crucial question still remained: would the bird be able to fly again? It was great that he was still alive, but without the power of flight, he’d hardly be able to live the kind of life that his species was supposed to.
eliotniman / Flickr
Sure enough, it only took a few hops before the bird took flight, soaring high above the trees before Crystal and Lily’s very eyes! He may not have stayed to say “thank you,” but surely he must have been grateful!
Crystal was surprised to see that her unusual lifesaving method worked, and his departure happened so quickly that she could hardly even process it. “Oh my gosh!” she exclaimed as the bird darted away. She could hardly believe how fast he flew!
Crystal certainly deserves a great deal of credit for her quick, clever thinking when it came to saving that bird’s life. Had it not been for her, the little guy would’ve been a goner!
However, Crystal also credits Lily with leading her to the discovery in the first place. “My Yorkie helped me find this bird. As you can see, she was very sweet to it…” she wrote on Facebook. “Yorkies are the best.”
Crystal Eve Kelley / Facebook
Yes, Yorkies rock, but that innate sense of duty is something that spans the canine species. One dog witnessed something that triggered his sense of urgency, and took to the streets in search of a helping hand. Thankfully, he walked directly into an ideal candidate.
February 15, 2015 began as a day like any other for on-duty police officer Jeff Gonzalez. The air was crisp and the quiet neighborhood of Autumn Ridge, Wisconsin, seemed as peaceful as it ever was. However, that was all about to change.
It was a particularly cold day, and there was plenty of snow on the ground from earlier in the week. That was just one of the reasons why it was so strange that Officer Gonzalez saw a clearly distressed black Labrador retriever wandering around by himself.
Fox 6 Now
Even though he wasn’t necessarily responsible for assisting lost pets for his job, Officer Gonzalez had an affinity for animals. Besides, he believed it was the right thing to do for his community… although in this case, the dog wasn’t the only one in trouble.
The dog was frantically pacing back and forth. Concerned that he might run into the road and get hit by a car, Office Gonzalez reduced his speed in an attempt to get closer to the animal and keep him calm.
Michigan State Police Emergency Management / Flickr
At that point, the dog took notice of the police officer, and although he stopped walking, he started barking… loudly. The moment that Officer Gonzalez rolled down his windows, the dog’s tail started wagging. He seemed friendly, but something was definitely wrong…
Officer Gonzalez stepped out of his car, and the Labrador became excited, running around frantically. The officer could only assume that he had done something to frighten the poor animal. Unless there was something more?
When the dog stopped again and looked back at Officer Gonzalez, it became clear that he wanted to lead him somewhere. Intrigued, the officer obliged, and he followed the dog directly to a nearby house. It wasn’t long before he figured out why the dog was so upset…
It was at this home that Officer Gonzalez found a woman, whom he assumed was the dog’s owner, slumped over in a chair on her front porch. He quickly assessed her condition, and she didn’t move when he touched her.
Officer Gonzalez initially assumed the worst. “I thought she was dead,” he later admitted. “And when I went up, she was very cold to the touch. Her lips were blue.” Thankfully, he checked her pulse—she was still alive! He immediately called dispatch for help.
Officer Gonzalez also contacted his partner, who helped him carry the woman into her home. The frigid temperatures could have threatened her life just as much as whatever else she was suffering from.
While they waited for the ambulance to arrive, the two officers were able to identify the woman: Krystal Wendt. With that information, they quickly tried to reach her next of kin.
Officer Gonzalez had the difficult job of calling Tianne Wendt, Krystal’s daughter. “Basically what he told me was… he said that they thought that she was dead,” the young woman said.
Shocked, Tianne and her aunt rushed to the hospital where the police had just taken Krystal. From there, all they could do was sit and wait for whatever news the doctors could give them. Meanwhile, Krystal’s dog—John Boy—was still worried, too!
Eventually, the women were informed that the incident had been caused by Krystal’s heart condition. The doctors explained that she had been unconscious in the cold for nearly an hour, but she survived!
Krystal’s survival was thanks largely to both Officer Gonzalez’s quick thinking and the cleverness of her black Labrador retriever, John Boy. Officer Gonzalez was quick to credit John Boy for saving the day!
Officer Gonzalez was convinced that John Boy was the true hero of the story. “I gotta believe that at this point, he pointed me in the right direction,” the officer said in an interview.
Tianne confirmed that John Boy and Krystal shared an important relationship. “He’s very protective of my mom,” she added. That shouldn’t have come as any surprise, since John Boy had three stints in a local shelter before Krystal adopted him!
Tianne believed that John Boy and her mother were meant for each other, and it was easy to see why. Though Krystal would need to be deemed healthy enough in order to be sent back home, at least she would have someone special waiting for her…
Tianne gave Officer Gonzalez a big hug to thank him for his hard work. Her mother was on the road to recovery, and it was all because this hard-working officer took the time to investigate a situation that others in his position might have brushed off.