An Arlington woman is praising the actions of firefighters and veterinarians who saved her horse that had become trapped in a deep hole.
Carolyn Putney and her horse Ginger have been inseparable for more than 25 years.
"She's my baby," said Putney, who owns several horses. "One of my babies is like one of my children."
She said she can't imagine life without Ginger, but earlier this week she nearly had to.
"I was just kind of horrified," said Putney.
While Ginger was grazing in the front yard near a culvert Monday, the ground gave way and she fell several feet into a large hole.
Putney was inside her house at the time. When she looked out the window and didn't see Ginger, she went out looking for her and found her on her back deep in the hole.
"I quickly tried to start calling the fire department and the city of Arlington to see who could come help me," said Putney.
The Arlington Fire Department sent its tactical rescue team, which has specialized equipment and training to perform trench rescues. It's not often, though, they use that skill set to pull a 1,200 pound animal to safety.
"It was an unusual call," said Lt. Lee Tovar, spokesperson for the Arlington Fire Department. "But of course, we responded and adapted to the situation."
While firefighters worked to put straps around Ginger's legs, Putney flagged down a nearby construction worker who brought a backhoe to help pull her out.
Ginger's veterinarian, Dr. Amy Armentrout, was also called to help sedate the horse so she wouldn't hurt herself or firefighters as they removed her from the hole.
"Once everyone showed up, it looked like we had a five-alarm fire because there were so many trucks," said Putney.
About two hours after Ginger fell in the hole, the team successfully got her out. They then loaded her in a trailer and took her to Burleson Equine Hospital for treatment.
"It was the perfect storm of fortuitous events," said Armentrout, who works at Burleson Equine Hospital. "I would consider her extremely lucky because she was trapped in a precarious situation."
Ginger hurt two legs that had to be wrapped in casts and also scratched up her back, but Armentrout said she's healing nicely.
"She really couldn't be doing any better," said Armentrout.
That's all Putney needs to hear.
"They are very much my heroes for saving her," said Putney.
Ginger will have to stay at the hospital for about two more weeks before she will be allowed to return home.