Update: Tiverton Patch learned Friday that deer was euthanized, according to Tiverton officials. The following story was published prior to this action.
A large deer found herself stuck between a rock and a hard place after the recent snowstorm, but thanks to Tiverton rescue crews and DEM, was freed from a narrow crevice Thursday afternoon.
A resident of Deer Run Road (that's the actual name of the road) let her dog out Thursday afternoon. He began to act a little strange, barking at a small rock crevice in the backyard.
"He kept sniffing and sniffing (at the rocks)," said Tiverton resident Dee Crawford. "I thought it was a groundhog."
A friend of Crawford's son began to investigate and saw the deer lift its head between the tiny space.
"The deer had her head up and looked at me," Crawford said. “I couldn't believe it. It's such a small tight space. I called animal control.”Animal Control Officer Paul Bell arrived to the area, as well as police and fire, shortly after 2:24 p.m.
Rescue crews found this
deer wedged in a small crevice. She appeared covered in snow, too.
"It had been there awhile," said Tiverton Fire Chief Robert Lloyd. "It got wedged farther in and, with the snow, got covered up."
Rescue crews believe the deer was on the rock ledge above, slipped on the ice and snow, and fell between the crevice. As she moved forward, she ended up becoming more stuck.
"When the deer slid off the ledge, it went right between," said Tiverton fire Lt. Robert Gagnon. "The deer kept wedging itself deeper and deeper."
Rescue crews also believe the deer was stuck in the 12 to 15-inches wide crevice overnight, when temperatures fell into single digits.
Crews made several attempts to move the rocks, including using the Jaws-of-Life, but it was hot, soapy water that finally did the trick.
"After several attempts, including spreading the rocks, we got hot, soapy water and poured hot, soupy water on the deer's back. We were then able to lift the deer's feet and back legs out," Gagnon said.
At 3:45 p.m., the deer was freed and found to have not broken any bones. However, she was too weak to stand on her own.
“The deer was placed in a shed so it could recuperate because it's so physically weak," Gagnon said. "It's warmer in the shed and lying on top of a blanket. They are gonna check on it later to see if it leaves on its own. It's just laying there resting until it's strong enough."
“She's trying so hard to get up, but she doesn't have the strength," said homeowner Crawford, who provided blankets for the deer.
Officials are hoping the deer will recover and leave the shed once strong enough.
Assisting with the rescue were Tiverton Fire Department personnel Lt. Gagnon, Firefighter Thomas Mello and Firefighter Mike Peloquin; ACO Bell; DEM official Peter Wood; and Tiverton police Lt. Bill Munroe.