A Riverside Animal Control officer saved a bighorn sheep Sunday evening in La Quinta.
According to a news release late today, Riverside County officer Kyle Stephens responded to the PGA West Country Club Sunday at about 6 p.m. after receiving a call from a security guard, with a report of a bighorn sheep stuck in a canal.
This is not the first time that bighorn sheep have been spotted at PGA West, they are known to graze on golf course grass. This sheep ended up in the canal near the Arnold Palmer Golf Course.
Officer Stephens said the animal appeared lethargic and he could see hoof marks where the sheep had unsuccessfully attempted to pull himself out of the water. But too much algae or moss made the surface too slick for the sheep to make it out, he said.
The officer used his control stick to loop one of the sheep's horns, then he made sure to find a flat surface to firmly plant his feet to make sure he didn't take a plunge.
Once he felt he had secure footing, he started to pull. "I was worried about whether he might pull back and force me in," Stephens said. "When I boosted him out, I could tell he was helping me out as best he could. It would have been much tougher going without his help. He was definitely helping me as I helped him."