Nanaimo firefighters’ rescue training proved to be pure gold when they helped rescue Silver, a horse that had become stuck in a pond and was in danger of drowning.
The incident happened on a farm located on the 2400 block of East Wellington Road on Wednesday.
Nanaimo Fire Rescue acting fire chief Karen Fry said the call for help came in at about 5:15 p.m. for a horse in a pond, with the owner helping to keep the animal’s head above water.
Nanaimo Fire Rescue Engine 1 from Station No. 1 was sent to the scene; the rope rescue truck from Station No. 2 was also alerted along with a veterinarian.
“From what I can gather we helped in ensuring the scene was safe and that nobody was in immediate danger and then assisted in pulling the horse out of the water,” Fry said.
She said fire departments in areas such as Langley, where large animal rescues are more common, will often call in a tow truck to help pull a horse or cow out of danger.
“They rested (calmed down) the horse, because he was obviously struggling in the water and then the plan from the owner was everyone would help pull him out after he was rested and this idea worked,” Fry said.
Silver, who had been struggling in the pond for more than 30 minutes, apparently came away from his close call relatively unharmed and was up and walking once he had rested for a bit after being pulled from the pond.
“He seemed fine,” Fry said. “I saw a couple of pictures of him afterwards and he looked OK and not too stressed or anything. In many situations these can turn quite tragic and sometimes animals will have to be euthanized if they’re stuck there.”