ORLAND PARK, Ill. (CBS) –– A small dog that found itself struggling in an Orland Park pond Thursday morning was rescued by firefighters who got an opportunity to practice their water-rescue skills.

The dog’s owner, Laura Murphy, says her pet, Copper, was chasing ducks near their home when the pooch ran onto the ice and broke through, becoming trapped in the pond.

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“It was a very serious situation for the animal,” Raymond Kay, acting chief of the Orland Park Fire Protection District, said in a news release.

Murphy said she called 9-1-1 and tried to go after Copper herself but also broke through the ice. The bottom was sticky mud, she tells CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot.

Firefighters arrived at the scene, at 156th and Lakeside. Firefighter/paramedic Tom Panzica says he put on “the Gumby suit” — a reference to an insulated, full-body ice-rescue suit. He had to wade in and break his way through the inch-thick ice to retrieve the stranded animal.

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Copper, the dog rescued from an Orland Park pond, was doing OK on Friday. (CBS)

Copper and his owner were doing fine Friday.

“For now, we’re sticking with leashes and not letting him out of my sight,” Murphy says. “It was too scary.”

Kay says the rescue shows how his fire protection district can be deployed for a variety of rescue situations, not just fires.

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“We’re there whenever there is a safety or rescue need, for individuals and also to save the pets of families,” Kay said in the news release.