Wigan father and son pull deer from canal in dramatic rescue

A dog walker has relived the dramatic moment he jumped into the canal to rescue a deer.
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Chris Kendall and his fiancee were walking their dogs near the Leeds-Liverpool Canal in Ince on Sunday evening when they discovered the animal was in the water.

They had seen deer on wasteland close to Rabbit Rocks a few minutes earlier and were stopped by a man asking for help.

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Chris, an apprentice plumber, said: “As we got to the canal there was a bloke already there at the lock. He asked if we were going up the canal and could we get to the lock keeper’s cottage to ask him to open the gates, because there was a deer stuck and he couldn’t get out.”

Denver and Chris KendallDenver and Chris Kendall
Denver and Chris Kendall

As it was a 10-minute walk away, Chris instead asked a passing cyclist to speak to the lock keeper and decided to take action himself to help the deer.

He said: “The water level was a bit low for us to be able to grab it. I got one of the dog’s leads off and that still wasn’t long enough. I decided to go down the ladder in the lock, but every time the deer came close to me, when I moved it got a bit panicked and moved.”

Chris, 24, phoned his dad Denver Kendall, 53, and asked him to go along to help.

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He got in the water with his son and, using two dog leads tied together, they managed to catch the deer and pull it out of the water to safety.

The deer seemed to be okay after the rescueThe deer seemed to be okay after the rescue
The deer seemed to be okay after the rescue

Chris, who lives in Ince, said: “It seemed okay, Once it had a minute, it seemed to run off okay.”

Despite getting a soaking, Chris was delighted that the deer escaped unhurt.

He said: “There was no other option but to rescue it. We tried what we could from standing on the bank but we couldn’t reach it. We either had to let it tire out and drown or get in to help, so there was no other option.”

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The dramatic rescue was filmed by Chris’ mum and has proved to be a hit on Facebook.

Denver and Chris Kendall in the canal with the deerDenver and Chris Kendall in the canal with the deer
Denver and Chris Kendall in the canal with the deer

He said: “Once I got home and had a shower, I saw it had 1,000 views already. The next morning it was on 30,000. At lunchtime it was 40,000. It’s gone a bit crazy. “Everyone is saying thank you. I have had a message from a bloke in Bradford thanking me for what I did.”

It was not the first time in recent weeks that Chris has come to the aid of animals.

A neighbour recently asked for help to rescue kittens living behind his shed.

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Chris spent two hours trying to get the cats out so somewhere safe could be found for them to stay.

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