Rescue crews pulled local horse from frozen pond

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Updated: 3/31 10:57 pm

NASSAU, N.Y. – A local horse fell through ice Friday and needed to be rescued by first responders.

Watching a beloved pet fighting for its life is a worst nightmare for any animal lover, but that’s what Carole Quinn experienced when she discovered her horse had broken through the ice on a pond – something that’s never happened before.

Quinn said she was home alone bringing her horses in when she saw her horse JR had wondered onto the ice and was in trouble.

“When I went to get him, he was in the ice,” Quinn said.

Her heart sank.

“He was screaming,” she described.

Quinn called 911.

“I have high blood pressure, and I think it reached the epitome of high,” she said.

Three fire departments arrived and began breaking the ice to free the freezing horse.

“He’s walked across that pond before, but he had no clue that the ice had melted that much,” Quinn said.

JR slipped and fell on the ice during a rescue attempt. He was too weak to stand, but Quinn’s dog rocket rushed to his side while crews continued to pull him out of the ice.

“I’m thinking, ‘How the hell did get in this mess,’” Quinn said.

The ice proved to be too slippery, so rescue crews had to use big equipment to lift the horse to safety.

“We had an excavator come in and literally pick the horse right up out of the water because there was too much ice on the edge of the pond,” Chief Robert Childs with the Hoags Corners Fire Department said.

After he was rescued from the pond, a veterinarian couldn’t get a temperature from JR. He was placed inside the barn with two blankets and hay to keep him warm.

“Horses keep warm by digesting hay,” Quinn explained. “So that will help warm him up.”

The 30-year-old horse is the great grandson of the famous Triple Crown winner Secretariat, and Quinn couldn’t be happier JR is expected to make a full recovery.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you,” she said.

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