December 7, 2017 2:02 am
Updated: December 11, 2017 8:50 pm

A deer, stuck on a frozen lake for 3 days, saved by people who normally just help humans

Some Kamloops residents banded together to save the life of a young deer that was stranded on a lake. Rumina Daya reports.


CLARIFICATION: Dec. 11 — In light of this story, Kamloops SAR issued a statement clarifying its role in rescues. The statement has been added to the bottom.

Members of Kamloops Search and Rescue (SAR) don’t normally help animals.

But when a deer spent three days stuck on the ice of Tunkwa Lake about 80 kilometres from the city, members of the organization sprang into action on their own time to ensure it didn’t die there.

Coverage of deer rescues on

The deer was first discovered by Dawn Polischuk, who was looking for a spot to go ice fishing.

She found the approximately 100-pound animal stuck in ice about 250 metres from shore.

“She was trying to get up,” Polischuk told Global News.

“Because I was coming she was probably frightened.”

Polischuk tried to contact the BC Conservation Officer Service (COS), but no one responded.

“It sickens me that somebody didn’t step up sooner and even when we called, no phone calls back to us. I couldn’t believe that no one had tried to help her,” she said.

Refusing to let the deer die, Polischuk contacted Kamloops Search and Rescue on Monday. They answered the call.

Story continues below

READ MORE: Video shows dog rescuing baby deer floating in waters off Long Island

“We rolled the deer in the toboggan, and the deer was exhausted,” said Mike Ritcey, a Kamloops SAR member who was not acting on behalf of the organization.

“It couldn’t stand up, the ice was like glass.”

Ritcey blindfolded the deer and took it to shore.

Polischuk was thankful that SAR stepped up to help the animal, but she still wants an explanation from the COS.

“It’s just sad that nobody, the people knew about it three days in advance, that nobody stepped up to the plate and actually did something,” she said.

The COS confirmed that it received a call about the deer but it’s still looking into why no officer responded.

In light of this story, Kamloops SAR issued the following statement on Facebook that underscores its role in rescues: 

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error


Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.