Llama drama: Howard County fire department rescues animal from flooded pasture near Patuxent River

A special operations crew rescued a llama from a flooded pasture near the Patuxent River in Howard County on Sunday morning, officials said.

The llama’s owner reported the animal being trapped on an island of land in the pasture on Mink Hollow Road in Highland amid rising floodwaters about 8:30 a.m., said Denise Weist, a spokeswoman for the Howard County Department of Fire and Emergency Rescue Services.

“The whole pasture had filled up with water from the flooding overnight,” Weist said. “It was deep enough that there was no way it was going to cross.”

The rescue crew fastened a rope to the animal’s harness and walked it through waist-high water back to dry land, Weist said. The fire department posted a photo of the rescue on its Twitter feed.

“After crews spent hours last night assisting car drivers out of the water, [the fire department] assisted the owner of this llama with bringing him to safety after his pasture was flooded overnight by the Patuxent River in Mink Hollow #SpecialOps,” the post says.

A hazardous weather outlook is in effect Sunday for the Maryland portion of the Chesapeake Bay, the Potomac River, and adjacent counties in central Maryland and northern Virginia as well as Washington, D.C., according to the National Weather Service.

“Flooding of streams and rivers is ongoing across the region,” the weather service said.

The llama rescue was “pretty unusual,” Weist said, and the photo has been getting a lot of reaction on social media. The department must triage its calls, prioritizing the most critical, but it rescues animals whenever possible, she said.

“It just happened to be that we were in a situation where we could help out,” Weist said.

cmcampbell@baltsun.com

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