Deputies and animal control officers in Texas rescued a horse stuck in an oil vat Friday night.

  • Horse got out of enclosure, fell into oil vat in Texas
  • Animal control said horse was holding on to edge of vat with hooves
  • Horse was pulled to safety and expected to be OK

According to officials, the horse wandered onto a property that had an active oil pump and storage tank on it.

Atascosa County Animal Control posted photos to its Facebook page showing the horse desperately holding itself up from going under. The only thing that appeared to hold the horse's head above the surface was its two front hooves, which were holding on to the edge of the vat.

"The horse's breathing was labored from exhaustion and we feared that he was going into shock," the animal control post said.

According to a news release, the rescuers used a halter on the horse to prevent it from going in and used a wooden plank to help when the horse’s legs got stuck on the ledge.

The horse was pulled to safety and is expected to be OK.

And even though it was completely covered in oil, rescuers say it does not appear to have ingested any.

Officials said the oil overfill was actually a partially-buried oil storage tank that was more than 6 feet deep.