LAKELAND, Fla. (WFLA) – A Polk County couple are grateful for well-trained deputies for saving their horse over the weekend.
Brenda Rinier made the frantic call to Polk County Animal Control on Saturday after her husband realized their beloved 20- year old mare Quarter horse was trapped in their pond in about six feet of mucky water.
“Her head was out and a little bit. It looked like she had kind of given up. That was the scary part,” Brenda Rinier said.
The couple is in the process of filling in the pond, so the surrounding area of the pond had decomposing wood mulch and muck, making it difficult for the horse to find solid ground.
“I just knew we had to get help or she wasn’t gonna make it,” Rinier said.
Rinier called Animal Control, who quickly put a team of rescuers together.
Members of the Agriculture Unit along with the Florida Department of Agriculture’s SART (State Agriculture Rescue Team) Equipment Trailer spent hours trying to get the horse out safely. Volunteer members of the PCSO Mounted Search and Rescue Team, or MSART, and two veterinarians also responded.
Polk County Fire Rescue Squad 591 and Fire Engine 111 responded to the scene assisting with the rope and pulley system used to pull the horse from the pond.
The horse was lifted out of the water using the A-Frame rescue system and placed on the dry ground beside the hole. The horse was dried with towels and with help, was able to stand after being in the water for several hours. The horse was then covered with a horse blanket in a covered barn with hay for the evening. Star was evaluated by a veterinarian and is doing better.
“It all came together because they were so, so good, and well-trained. If it wasn’t for them there’s no way that she would have ever made it,” Rinier said.
“I just want to say thank you to each one of them. They were so sweet to me and my husband, because it was very hard to watch.”