THE full extent of animal rescues in Wigan is today revealed by the Wigan Evening Post.
From horses stuck in mud, cats stuck up trees and wild deers trapped in bushes, Wigan’s fire service have attended to 29 incidents involving animals in the last three years.
This has included just one emergency this year, involving assisting a horse out of mud and water near Beech Tree houses, Bamfurlong.
The three-year-old foal was found trapped in the sludgy bed of a stream, but despite a six-hour rescue, it ended in tragedy.
There were only three animal call-outs last year, again pulling a horse out of a muddy bog or canal, in Leigh West, Abram and Wigan Central.
The majority of animal rescues occurred in 2012, with 16 incidents.
This included a trapped wild animal and a domestic pet outdoors and four reports of lifting a dog, cat or bird from a tree, roof, or high wall.
One of the most recent - and notable - rescue acts came in December last year.
A horse was rescued by firefighters after unseating her rider and plunging into the freezing waters of the Leeds Liverpool Canal near to Pennington Flash, Leigh.
Her female rider was lying injured on the canal bank about 300m from the horse.
Another major incident involved a huge blaze at a farm in Wellington Drive, Tyldesley, last April.
Three pigs and six chickens were successfully rescued by fire crews after the inferno destroyed a number of farm buildings.
A spokesman for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) said that as Wigan borough has lots of farm land, problems can arise when animals are grazing.
She said: “We get called out to a number of animal incidents each year, usually by members of the public or the RSPCA.
“The RSPCA will request a rescue if they think there is a risk of life or they need specialist equipment to lift or raise an animal from danger.”
Among recent rescues locally by the RSPCA was the freeing of a deer caught up in undergrowth in Haydock woodland.
A spokesman for RSPCA said: “Pets, wildlife and farm animals can all find themselves in need of a little assistance from time to time. When they do, we’re here to help.
“We get called out to all sorts of accidents, from the ordinary to the extraordinary.”