ARAPAHOE COUNTY, Colo. --Rescuers stopped at nothing to save a 13-year-old horse named Cupcake from a muddy swamp near Denver.
Eric Hurst, of the South Metro fire district, caught the entire rescue effort on camera.
When firefighters found Cupcake, she was in severe distress. She had wandered 400 years off a trail and wound up knee-deep in mud, KDVR reports.
Cupcake was given IV fluids, steroids and vitamins to regain her strength.
"Cupcake didn't want to give up. You could see it in her eyes," one rescuer said.
Very emotional scene. Buttercup is exhausted. More SMFR Firefighters on the way to help. pic.twitter.com/Dd7EefbRsD— SouthMetroFireRescue (@SouthMetroPIO) July 28, 2016
Then firefighters and a group of volunteers used ropes to painstakingly haul the horse up and out of the mud.
"It's definitely a life or death situation. That horse either had to stand up and get out of there or be helicoptered out," another rescuer said.
Doug Hammack, of 12 Miles Stables, was one of those volunteers.
"I'm just a guy that could help and did help. It's hard to see a horse go through that. We're all horse lovers out here. It was a very powerful experience to get her out of that mud," Hammack said.
Cupcake will spend a few days with a veterinarian. Thankfully, she is expected to be OK.