Firefighters worked for almost three hours to rescue a retired polo pony from a swimming pool on Tuesday (2 June).

The pony, named Juanita, escaped from her field in Winkfield Row, Bracknell, and fell into a neighbour’s pool in the early hours of the morning.

The fire service was called shortly after 5am and crews from Bracknell, Caversham and Reading worked until 8am to free her.

A vet sedated Juanita before she was lifted from the pool using straps and lines.

“We needed the manpower to lift all 450/500kg of Juanita out of the water,” said crew manager Barry Whiting.

“She was very calm in the water but was under stress as she had low blood pressure.”

The family whose garden Juanita broke into were woken by the sound of distressed neighing.

Neighbour Emilie Smith described the incident as “very random” to local press and added that she was “very relieved” to hear the pony was ok.

Warning to owners

As summer approaches owners are warned to secure fencing in paddocks, and around pools, as horseandhound.co.uk frequently reports on horses falling into swimming pools.

Last month (13 May) firefighters hoisted a palomino horse out of a swimming pool in Somerset.

The rescue took place in the village of Chapel Allerton near Cheddar at 4.18pm.

A vet had been called out to sedate the horse before the specialist rescue team from Bridgewater arrived.

“Fire crews attached a lifting device to the horse and assisted in rescuing the horse using a mechanical digger. The horse was in not in distress and was fine afterwards,” said a spokesman for the Devon & Somerset fire and rescue service.