Oh, deer! Okaloosa deputies rescue fawn trapped in Crestview fence
CRESTVIEW — Part of working in the northern part of Okaloosa County means sheriff’s deputies often end up assisting wildlife that have wound up in danger.
Sgt. Nicholas Grundin said people frequently call the Sheriff's Office to alert deputies to animals that are crossing roads or are in potentially dangerous situations.
Monday was no different when a call came in from a passer-by who spotted a young deer that appeared to be stuck in a fence at a home off Phil Tyner Road.
“We do get some (calls) for animals that are in need to help them out, get them out of the way so they don’t get hurt or killed,” Grundin said. “We get quite a few.”
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Grundin and Deputy Joshua Hamilton arrived at the Crestview home about 12:40 p.m. The little spotted fawn was caught in a metal fence a couple feet into the property. Part of its legs appeared to have lost hair from the young deer trying to remove itself, Grundin said.
“On one side you could see the tail end of the deer stuck in between the two pieces of fence, and you could hear the deer screaming as you tried to get closer to it,” said Grundin, who added that it looked like the deer had been stuck there for several hours.
The homeowners were unaware the deer was trapped, but were open to any possible solution once deputies explained the situation.
"They were great," Grundin said. "They said 'Do whatever you need to to get the deer out.'"
Deputies initially planned to bend the bars, but when they approached the fence they found an easier way. Screws were holding the fence posts together.
“We were able to remove the screws out of one section and just lift the bar straight up so that we could pull the deer backwards and then push it through the hole,” Grundin said.
It only took about 10 minutes for Hamilton to remove the fence and free the fawn. It was missing some hairs on both sides of its body where the back legs had been trapped, but didn’t appear to have any significant injuries, Grundin said.
“Once we were able to free it, it just laid down on the ground and stared at us,” he said. “Then after about 30 to 45 seconds it just looked up and jumped up and took off into the woods.”
Grundin said it was “great” to see the rescue end in success as the deer left. He also commended the community for keeping an eye out for people and wildlife alike.
“We definitely enjoy stuff like that. It’s great to see getting them free and getting them out of there. We’ve had a lot of good people up here in Okaloosa that always watch out for us and call in and watch out for other people and other animals. We’ve got a good community, that’s for sure.”