Gunther and Wilhelm are two huge 15-year-old Clydesdale horses who are typically very well behaved. But one snowy morning in February 2019, the two horses decided they wanted to go on an adventure. And so, they broke out of their pasture at the Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm and hit the road.
Unfortunately, disaster quickly struck the pair. The two horses wandered onto a frozen lake, and they fell through the thin ice.
The horses thrashed around, trying to free themselves, but they couldn’t get to shore. If the horses didn’t get help, they would have drowned.
Thankfully, a passer-by saw the horses and called the local fire department. Emergency responders raced over to the lake.
Once the emergency responders got to the lake, they realized they had a problem: the horses were too big to fit on their rescue boats.
“There was no way we were going to pick them up, put them on the ice and slide them out on a boat,” Chief Leon Clapper of Blue Ridge Hook & Ladder Fire Company told KMOV.
The emergency responders ended up using ropes to pull the horses to shore. It took a ton of manpower, but they were eventually able to get the horses back onto dry land!
“You always wonder when you’re first on the scene and you see that if it’s going to be a tragedy. And you saw the two horses walk away, it’s a hell of a good feeling,” Chief Clapper said.
Word quickly spread about the horses, and people in the community brought heating pads and blankets.
A veterinarian also headed over to the scene to make the horses were okay. Wilhelm had a small cut that needed stitches and a sore eye, but it could have been much worse.
“There were tears because we were worried,” neighbor Arlene Reading told WNEP. “They are beautiful, beautiful animals. Everybody worked together and got these horses out safely.”
Once the vet finished checking out the horses, the emergency responders brought them back to their home at Quiet Valley Living Historical Farm. The farm owners were so happy that there were horses were okay.
“We cannot begin to thank all of the first responders, rescuers, and fireman who came to the help of our horses. Without them we would be telling a very different story. Several of these amazing men and women needed medical care after helping Wilhelm and Gunther for exhaustion and a few stray horse’s foot steps,” Quiet Living Historical Farm wrote on Facebook.
Gunther and Wilhelm have now recovered from their ordeal, and they’re spending their time relaxing in their barn. They haven’t shown interest in going on any more adventures!
When these two large horses fell into an icy pond, a whole community came together to help them. We’re so glad these horses are okay!
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h/t: Western Journal