onto his right side. His back was
up against the side of the hole,
but his right front leg was wedged
under an exposed leach pipe.
“We climbed down to Ice and
got a halter and lead rope on him,
hoping we could get him up and
walk him out, but we realized this
wasn’t going to be possible, so we
called Dr. Staten,” says Steven.
“We put blankets against the side
5: 40 p.m.
of the hole to protect him and
just tried to keep his head steady
while we waited for her. We also
called a friend with a backhoe and
he came and dug a new channel,
trying to make another path out.”
Although Steven had given Ice
a sedative under Staten’s orders,
the horse was still very upset.
When Staten arrived on the
scene, the situation looked dire.
“This was an older horse and he
was very distressed,” she recalls.
“His heart rate was more than
double the normal rate and his
respiratory rate was incredibly
elevated. There was so much
mud at the bottom of the hole
that we couldn’t see the horse’s
legs clearly. We couldn’t tell
if any were broken or caught
around the leach pipe.”
Staten was able to further
sedate the horse and then put
him under general anesthesia.
Under the circumstances,
getting a needle into the horse’s
jugular vein was no easy task.
Michael put a rope around
Staten’s waist and held it firmly
to keep her from slipping as she
leaned into the hole. Once Ice
was completely sedated, Steven
and Michael were able to safely
work to free his leg from under
the pipe. Fortunately, the leg