A horse that was trapped for about an hour and a half after a crash in Temecula Wine Country is making a remarkable recovery, her owner is reporting.
The horse’s owner, Colleen Moore, said “Katie” suffered some serious cuts and abrasions on her hind legs, and has minor lacerations across the rest of her body, but is generally on the mend.
“She is an amazing horse,” Moore said.
Despite a rescue that took a good part of the morning Monday, Katie remained calm throughout the ordeal, Moore explained.
“People can’t believe how good she was,” Moore said.
Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department’s Captain Todd Hoover helped with Katie’s rescue. He arrived on scene to find an overturned horse trailer attached to an overturned pickup truck.
“The vehicles were 20 feet over the side of the road, down an embankment, with the rear of the trailer elevated five feet off the ground,” he said. “Firefighters stabilized the pickup -- they used rescue struts -- then placed high-lift air bags under the rear of the horse trailer. This allowed firefighters to detach the trailer from the pickup, then lower the rear of the trailer to the ground so that the horse could be safely removed.”
Doug Lawrence, DVM, from Murrieta-based Equine Health Management, and Riverside County Department of Animal Services assisted in the efforts.
Moore was not present during the crash. Instead, the 47-year-old Poway resident was at work in San Diego County when she got the terrifying news.
“My friend was taking her back to the barn after a weekend of trail riding,” Moore explained. “My friend said a blue or green sedan cut her off so she veered into the shoulder. The trailer went down the embankment and pulled the truck down with it.”
The friend was not seriously hurt.
The well-mannered half Arabian, half Quarter Horse mare was being hauled in a Logan trailer back to Berg Performance Horses in Temecula where she is boarded and in training as a reining horse with Mike and Kristi Berg.
Moore visits the ranch three or four times a week and is there every weekend. She said the day of the accident was pretty scary.
“Katie was really swollen and very stiff,” Moore said, noting that her mare is back home with the Bergs and under veterinary observation.
The vets were initially concerned about possible internal injuries to Katie, but that worry has passed, Moore said.
“We’re really focusing now on preventing infection,” she explained.
Moore believes Katie’s injuries would have been less severe had her hind legs been protected by padded shipping boots or leg wraps.
“Her front legs were wrapped,” she said. “It’s her hind legs that got the worst of it.”
Moore takes the blame for not wrapping Katie’s hind legs, but said she hopes others will learn from the accident.
“Always use shipping boots!” she said.
Moore doesn’t know what this accident will set her back when all is totaled, but she knows the ultimate bill is well into the thousands. A totaled truck, trailer damage (although it didn't buckle in the crash), property damage at the scene, vets bills …
But at the end of the day, she counts herself lucky. She’s owned Katie since the horse was 1-year-old.
“I love her.” --Mirna Alfonso contributed to this report.