Several members of the Waterloo Fire Department volunteered their heavy lifting efforts late Monday morning following a freak accident involving a horse trailer on Route 3.
A vehicle transporting two horses in a trailer from Ruma to a regular check-up in Missouri pulled over along Route 3 near North Moore Street after one of the horses slipped inside the trailer and knocked a metal divider on herself.
Once on scene, it was determined one horse, named Tootsie, was uninjured but the other horse, a 12-year-old mare named Dreamer, was unable to stand on her own.
“She didn’t want to use her legs,” Waterloo Fire Chief Aaron Shive said.
It was decided to transport Dreamer to Mueller Veterinary Clinic off Hanover Road and contact MERS Large Animal Rescue in Missouri for assistance.
WFD firefighters assisted in removing Dreamer from the trailer at the vet clinic, after which large animal rescue personnel assembled an A frame to get the horse on her feet.
“She showed the ability to stand but would immediately collapse, head nearly on the ground,” MERS Large Animal Rescue posted on Facebook about the incident. “After the third attempt, we lowered her onto the glide and put our nifty heated horse blanket on her and worked on getting her core temp back up (it was at 95 due to the frigid winds).”
The rescuers had moved Dreamer into a barn at the vet clinic for transport to a hospital when after about an hour, she “gave a mighty lunge to her feet where she stood steadily,” MERS Large Animal Rescue posted. “We love happy endings!”
Shive said the horse may have been dazed from the ordeal and the added factor of low body temperature may have temporarily rendered Dreamer unable to use her legs.
“I’m glad she’s up and walking,” Shive said, adding that “she really put us to work.”
The owner of the horses, Stephanie Kennedy, offered thanks to all who assisted.
“We are so fortunate to have encountered so many amazing people who offered their support today and froze right alongside of us,” Kennedy said.