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On Sunday, members of the Horse Animal Rescue Team (H.A.R.T.), with a major assist from the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department’s air team, participated in a horse rescue near Palm Springs.

Riverside County Animal Services Officer Hector Palafox captured these images (attached) during the tail end of the horse airlift.

Two horses were injured after falling from a ridge in a remote area near Palm Springs. The call first came into Riverside County Animal Service Saturday afternoon. But the amount of daylight was fading, so a rescue attempt with a Riverside County Sheriff’s helicopter unit and H.A.R.T. members was scheduled for early Sunday morning. The horses’ owners stayed with their injured animals overnight. On Sunday, a staging area was located in the Snow Creek area along Snowcreek Canyon Road, south of Interstate 10 and west of Highway 111.

H.A.R.T. members prepared an Anderson Sling to safely hoist the injured horses out of the canyon area. Sometime between noon and 1 p.m., the first horse safely arrived to the staging area. The horse, which had been sedated prior to the airlift, was immediately treated for injuries. When the sedation wore off, the horse came to its feet, then it was gingerly walked toward the owner’s trailer.

A second horse suffered head trauma and actually suffered further injuries from a second fall down a ravine as rescuers were prepping that horse for its airlift. That second fall ultimately led to the horse’s death.

An official news release from the Riverside Fire Department is attached.

Additional photos are posted on our Facebook page.

Contact a Shelter

Western Riverside: (951) 358-7387 (PETS)
San Jacinto: (951) 358-7387
Coachella Valley: (760) 343-3644
Blythe: (760) 921-7857

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