Puppies and owls rescued by crews

Ruby was rescued from a quarry, with Scott Alderson and Becky Hall.
Ruby was rescued from a quarry, with Scott Alderson and Becky Hall.

Puppies trapped in sofas, pigeons in chimneys and even baby owls stuck in trees were among the 250-plus animal rescues carried out by West Yorkshire firefighters.

Figures revealed that domestic, commercial and even wild animals have been helped in the line of duty.

Across the region there were 265 animal rescue incidents in the last two years.

The information provided by Birkenshaw-based West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, after a Freedom of Information request, does not specify exact details of each incident but instead groups them into rescues for large or small animals.

Watch commander Lee Benson said the most common call outs were for horses and dogs.

“They are like a family’s third or fourth child,” he said.

“We deal with a wide variety of emergencies but horses getting caught in barbed wire or fences are typical rescues.”

Some of the more routine rescues – such as cats stuck up trees – are often not even dealt with by the fire service, as RSPCA officers can do the job more quickly.

Mr Benson said he had seen some weird and wonderful sights, from a dog rescued from a cliff ledge in a quarry to a group of baby owls stranded in a tree. He said: “A guy who was into bird watching had seen the owls stuck in this tree. He told us the mother had been caught by a fox so we rescued them. They were sent to a sanctuary in North Wales.”