Called by an Amissville farmer who’d found one of his cows had spent a cold night stuck in a muddy creek bed, members of Amissville Volunteer Fire & Rescue, the Rappahannock County Sheriff’s Office and the Large-Animal Rescue unit of Little Fork Volunteer Fire & Rescue — one of a handful of such specially trained technicians in the state — worked for several hours in the wind and subfreezing temperatures Feb. 26 to free her.
Here (second row, first photo), members of of the Large Animal Rescue unit set up rigging to move the cow up the embankment and into the field. From left, they are: Deputy Chief Roger Lightner, James Dyer and Nick Barry.
Dyer holds the cow’s head clear of the water (second row, third photo) while crew members used a sideways drag, and then a specially designed sling (fourth row) to try to get the cow on her feet. Veterinarian Monica O’Brien, of Rose Hill’s large-animal practice (fourth row), arrived to examine the cow and started her on intravenous fluids. Little Fork chief Doug Monaco, who says his 12-member large animal rescue unit answers calls every two to three months, reported that unfortunately the cow did not make it through the ordeal.