BANGOR, Maine - It could have been a scene straight out of "Lassie." Kurt Smith was working in the yard at his horse boarding and breeding facility Monday when Molly, his border collie, came running and barking, signaling that something was amiss.

Smith, the owner of Essex Stud Arabians, discovered that the 2-month-old foal Mati _ short for Matinicus Rock _ had fallen into a 12-foot-deep abandoned well.

"(Molly) baby-sits the baby horse and looks right after her," Smith said.

Smith called the Bangor Fire Department, which dispatched firefighters and a ladder. He descended into the well, slid ropes around Mati's front legs and hindquarters and was able to pull her out of the well, "no worse for the wear," he said.

The 250-pound foal, owned by Lisa Kelly, was small enough to fall down the well that was about 5 feet wide. The artesian well had been covered with boards, but the wood had begun to deteriorate. The well shaft was filled in with gravel Tuesday to prevent any future incidents.

The story of a horse falling into a well gets odder still. Earlier that morning, Smith and his wife, Denise Mitchell, had watched a television news report about "Baby Jessica," whose rescue after she fell into a well in Texas nearly 20 years ago engrossed the nation.

"Then two hours later we had baby Mati," Smith said. "It was deja vu."