While spending the day at a beach in Louisiana, an couple from Iowa took advantage of the opportunity to approach a dolphin and help the animal swim back to its home (video below).
On April 9, Robert and Elsie Lane went to Rutherford Beach in Creole, Louisiana, to ride their ATV. While enjoying a day of fun in the sun, they saw a beached dolphin.
"We thought it was dead at first, but then we saw its tail flip up [and] I said, 'We can finally save one!'" Elsie told KPLC-TV
Because the beach was virtually deserted, the couple knew they had to take action.
"We were the only ones around for miles," Robert recalled. "So it was now or never for this poor dolphin."
Elsie immediately jumped off the ATV to approach the calm, beached animal.
"It was so gentle," she said. "It let me pet it and it watched me with its eyes."
In a video recorded by Robert, Elsie can be seen grabbing the six-foot-long animal by its tail to drag it deeper into the water. She wanted turn the dolphin so that its head faced the Gulf.
Originally, the dolphin did not move, but after a few seconds, "it’s like it got its bearings and took off," Robert recalled.
"He had four-or-five of his friends waiting for him," he added.
After the incident, Elsie said she smiled for the rest of the day.
"There's not a lot of people who would have done it," Robert said of his wife’s actions. "But she didn't hesitate. It was the right, humane thing to do."
"I keep saying it's amazing, but that is what it really is," Elsie said. "It was one of the most awesome feelings I have felt in quite a while. To get to see and touch a creature that not many people get to see."
On the KPLC 7 News Facebook page, numerous comments lauded the couple.
"I wish more people were this kind to animals," wrote Mariah Aloisi.
"Way to go," said David Kressman. "Great to hear some good news."