Freeport animal control officers rescue animals from floodwaters

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FREEPORT, Ill. (WIFR) -- Floodwaters in Freeport have forced 173 people from their homes. One homeowner is sharing the story of the city’s rescue efforts to pull his dog from his home.

"It's just not an experience I want anyone to ever have to go through,” said Shawn Starry.

Many of us have a list of what we would grab from our home if we had to abandon it in an emergency. Starry never had time to make that choice.

"My wife was at work, and I came back into town, and at that point I realized I couldn't get across the bridge and into my home."

Starry may have been safe, but his dog, Chance, was not.

"I figured I'd come back in the morning - hopefully the water would be down by then enough that we could drive into our place, and at that point I realized police were telling us that we could not cross the bridge at all."

He decided to reach out to the city for help.

"He called and he couldn't get back to get him, so we picked him up in a [truck] and took him back,” said Freeport animal control officer, Bill.

“My dogs were upstairs - they were really scared. I got them in a kennel and then jumped back on.”

Now, Chance and Snowy are waiting with animal control until his owners find a place to stay.

Freeport firefighters pulled 14 dogs and eight cats from homes surrounded by floodwaters.

Starry says it makes this difficult situation easier knowing his best friend is safe.

"I didn't know if it was gonna get to a point where I had to jump in and swim to him, but the city came through and they were really wonderful."