Owners say blind horse rescued from sinkhole is in stable condition

by Michael Mosher on September 14, 2012

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The owners of a blind rescue horse rescued from a sinkhole Sunday night told 10News that Star is in stable conditions at Country Side Vet Service’s intensive care unit.

Jackie and Jennifer Estep said she will be recovering there for three to four more days.  On Monday, the Esteps visited Star at the vet and took her outside for a walk.

Jackie and Jennifer Estep said they really appreciate Fire Chief Doug McClanahan and the rest of the Blount County Fire Department for rescuing their horse.  They said they would like to thank Country Side Vet Service, UT Vet Service and everyone who was involved in the rescue as well.

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Blount County firefighters have safely pulled a blind rescue horse from a 20-foot sinkhole.

The horse, which is named Star, was stuck in the Louisville sinkhole for several hours around the 3800 block of Quarry Road.

Veterinarians told 10News as far as they can tell, Star will not have any long-term injuries.

“Took a little while to do, but it looks like right now she’s gonna be fine,” said Doug McClanahan, fire chief of the Blount County Fire Department.

He said crews used a special rescue strap from UT Veterinary School to pull Star out of the sinkhole. 

Blount County firefighters also sedated Star in order to get her out of the hole. 

“It’s crazy. I’m just glad she’s out, I just hope she’s fine and we’ll just go from there,” said Star’s co-owner Jack Estep.

Star will spend the night in a vet clinic so she can be observed. If all goes well overnight, she will be released sometime Monday morning.

Estep said Star was with a herd earlier Sunday, but did not come back with the other horses.  He said a tree fell over on the property during a recent rain-event, and tore down part of the fence.  Estep found that damage on Sunday when he went looking for Star, and said he did not know about the sinkhole where Star is trapped.

The Estep’s found Star on Craigslist four months ago.  They rescued Star from a woman who couldn’t take care of her because she is blind.  Rescuers said that, while Star’s handicap may be a factor in her fall, it did not challenge them in saving her.

Full article…here

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