Fire hoses and a whole lot of muscle used to rescue horse from mud bog

It may have been a little tired, a little wet and plenty dirty, but a Saanich horse named Gecko was in good health Saturday after Saanich firefighters pulled it from a marshy area on property near Camosun College’s Interurban campus.

The horse’s owner called 911 Saturday morning after the horse got stuck on a Viaduct Avenue property and could not free itself.

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According to Rob Heppell, an assistant deputy chief with Saanich Fire, the crew used a pair of 2 1/2-inch fire hoses and a whole lot of muscle to free the horse.

Firefighters have experience with technical rescues, “but this is definitely not something we train for on a daily basis,” he said of the operation, which took about an hour.

The horse’s owner on hand to advise firefighters on the best way to stay safe and deal with large animals..

“They provided some safety oversight for the crew to make sure those not used to working around large animals were made aware to stay clear of the business end of the animal,” Heppell said.

The horse was exhausted after it was freed and lay on the ground before gathering its energy to stand, he said.

“He was quickly on his feet and had no injuries so that was good to see.”

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