Viral images of a pink-maned pony on Montreal's Île Sainte-Hélène were part of a hoax staged by a local television show.
Images of the pony had been circulating online since Sunday, and a staged social media campaign was created to save the four-legged equine before it got hurt.
The initial Reddit post, and subsequent Facebook page, were created by the TVA program Vlog.
Employees of the Société du parc Jean-Drapeau, the paramunicipal agency that manages the island, had been keeping an eye out for the animal, said spokesperson Gabrielle Meloche.
"It all was a test," said Meloche.
She said she was glad that, in the end, no animal was ever in danger.
Montreal police said they had not received any calls about a horse, miniature or otherwise, wandering around the island.
Social media posts lead to pony search
A fake Facebook account under the name Gilles Bouchard and fake Reddit account with the username gbphotoclick posted about the pony and created a Facebook page called "Sauvons le mini-cheval," which translates roughly as "Save the pony."
Images posted to the page showed the animal wandering along a road, munching on grass and avoiding passing cars — ghostly white with a punk rock flair, the neon-coloured biosphere or city skyline glowing in the background.
The Facebook page and Reddit account had been deleted by Wednesday afternoon.