At 0746o, West Bradford Fire Company (Station 39), was alerted for a public assist for a horse down on a trail. Chief 39 responded and quickly recognized the need for Po-Mar-Lin Fire Company (Station 36) and the Large Animal Rescue (LAR) trailer. Station 36 and the Chester County Animal Rescue Team (CCART) was then dispatched to Manorwood drive in West Bradford Township for a horse stuck on its side, on a trail, downhill from the stable and riding ring. Utility 36 with LAR36 and Brush36 with ATV36 made the response and arrived within 15 minutes joining the crews from Station 39.
Crews from 36 and 39 quickly organized a game plan selecting the appropriate equipment and headed up the trail to find the downed horse. The 31-year-old horse named Ellie was laying on her left side for an unknown amount of time. The crews quickly went to work with assistance from the stable’s veterinarian, Patty Blakeley, from Unionville Equine. After minor sedation crews loaded Ellie onto a sled and moved her down the hill to a flat area about 100’ away. Ellie was too weak to stand on her own despite several attempts. Ellie's owner from the stable called in a large tractor so crews could utilize the Becker sling to hoist Ellie up and carry her about 1500’ up the hill, through a field, and around the barn to an round pen where she could recover.
The sling was used under the direction of the rescue crew and the veterinarian to stabilize her while she regained her strength and then slowly worked on getting her out of the sling and standing on her own. After about an hour, she recovered enough to walk on her own. Crews then lead Ellie to the barn and put her in her stall so she could continue her recovery.
A great outcome and solid teamwork by all involved!
Photos courtesy of Assistant Chief Deans.