Lt. Thomas Kmetz said the department received a report of two canines stuck in the mud near Hudson Avenue. Officer Christopher Lotito responded to the scene and saw that the dogs had entered a cove left partially empty of water due to the 5-foot draining of the lake that has been underway since September. The cove was filled with mud and the dogs reportedly sank into the muck to their bellies, according to the police report.
"One of the dogs had mud up to its bottom jaw," Kmetz added.
Officer Lotito, with the help of Hudson Avenue resident Christine Milcheck, was able to get the dogs to return to the roadway before venturing back into the cove. Milcheck provided two leashes that were used to control the dogs until their owner could be found, said the lieutenant.
Police learned that the dogs' owner was unable to drive for medical reasons. Officer Lotito used the Hopatcong Animal Control truck to give the canines a ride home.
Kmetz cautioned that something similar could happen to humans as well.
"Anyone by the lake, please be aware that it is easy to sink in the mud by almost all of the shore lines around the lake," he said.