Monday, December 29, 2008

Before and After

I found a riding program about five years ago in Ridgefield, Washington. It was a very inexpensive way to get back into horses after taking a LONG hiatus. Helen, the woman in charge, had five horses available to ride according to your experience. I rode this wonderful sorrel mare, Honey. Honey was amazing...loved her to pieces..still have pictures of us all over my fridge. She also had a old retired roping horse named "Blue," that you could put anyone on. He always took care of his rider. He was a little arthritic, but he still was eager out on the trails. There was also a horse named "Tucker" that was Helen's first horse. He loved to run, even though he was in his 20s...he had a lot of get up and go. Helen met a guy and decided to get married and move to Idaho. She placed Tucker and Blue with a rescue facility somewhere in Oregon. This summer she went to visit them and was horrified by their condition and weight. She hatched a plan to get them back to Idaho, worried that Blue wouldn't survive trip. It has been about three months since she got them home and today she sent me photos of the "before" and "after." It is so nice to see them again and see that they are fat and furry. They are such good boys and played such a huge role in renewing and rekindling my love for horses. I think by looking at theses photos, it is a good reminder that you never can be too sure of the people you sell or give your horses too.


allhorsestuff said...

Oh wow, that was a terrible thing to have happen to those horses. I am sooo glad that she popped on by to find she needed to take them back!
That is whay I will never get rid of any horse I have!I couldn't live with the wondering.

Rising Rainbow said...

You are so right about that. What you think is going to be the very best place can turn out to be the very worst. It's really hard letting go in the first place without finding out the horses are uncared for.

I'm glad these horses found their way home where they belonged.

Lori Skoog said...

When I commit to a horse, it is for life. I don't trust too many of the options.

Yes, Coop is short for Cooper.


Grey Horse Matters said...

What a horrible feeling to think your horses are being well taken care of only to find they are not.
I'm so glad she went to visit her horses and found them again and took them back. They look great all fuzzy and fed in the after pictures.
There's not enough punishment for all these illegitimate rescues operating out there.

Drillrider said...

WOW--Was I surprised this morning to check your blog to find Tucker and Blue posted!! To all your readers, please have NOTHING to do with Jutta Kress in Gaston, OR and a rescue called Valley Equine Rescue.

At the time she purchased the horses, she only had two other horses, and my horses were going to be "family" horses, but within a month, she had 21 horses and had started a rescue and was a beginner to the horse world!!

I knew right away that my former horses were in trouble and it was only through my persistence that I discovered the horses were not only in trouble, but in crisis.

She still has one of them. A quarter horse pony named Sheba and I can only hope that she is still in good health. She was in good weight at the time these two boys were rescued from her "so called" rescue.

It has sickened myself, friends and family that these horses were in this poor condition "leaving" a rescue. I believe their word was "criminal".

Drillrider said...

P.S. Thanks Jules for spotlighting this story!!

Kathy C said...

Wow the bay is my daughters horse Kelzon reincarnated... I'm so glad she thought to check in on them and could rescue them.

Flying Lily said...

Oh my, everyone's worst fear about letting a horse go to someone else...they certainly do look gorgeous now!! Thank goodness.

Esther Garvi said...

They look great! Many of the horses here in Niger could do with similar success stories...
Warm greetings from West Africa, where another newborn just made it to the ark!


Stacey Kimmel-Smith said...

let's hear it for healthy horses!

Drillrider said...

I am Helen--the one that rescued my former horses.

UPDATE: I reported this abuse to the Oregon Humane Society for follow up. Basically, the outcome was two investigators went out, looked around. The other horses were okay, so it is a matter of "he said, she said" at this point.

I did point out that I had documented photographic evidence, but doubt that it will go any further from here.

While I'm happy the other horses are okay, it is frustrating that it appears to be okay to starve horses 1/2 to death!

Anonymous said...

wow~~ your horse looks very handsome.
please be a part of my beautiful world: ******
It is a place where thousands of active and unrestrained horse people meet, date, become friends and more in the pursuit of the same dream as you have.

Pony Girl said...

That is so sad. I'm glad she was able to get them back.

Like Lori, I've committed to My Boy. It is one reason I would never sell him ~ unless there was no other option. You never know what could happen in life, especially with the economy. But no matter how good of a home you think it might be, you just never know. I would rather lease him out, give him to a family member, a therapeutic riding stable...those would be my first options.

Drillrider said...

Pony Girl: I gave Blue (the chestnut) to a family member, initially (my nephew). My nephew got a job offer in Texas and moved his family. At that time, Blue went to a "trusted" friend, who subsequently went through a divorce. That was how Blue ended up at the "so-called" rescue.

Since Blue put weight on, I gave him to someone in Gooding, ID and he now is in a SUPER FANTASTIC home with a family that is pampering the HECK out of him.

Blue recently had a fall on the ice and couldn't get up. Her family was up until 2:30 AM taking care of him. They pulled him off the ice, put hay all around him and covered him with a sleeping bag. He had a 50/50 chance to make it through the night (per the vet).

In the AM, Blue was up and doing better, but his rump was strange looking. It appeared he had dislocated his hip in the fall.

This new owner took extra special care of him, massaged his hip and yesterday he was trotting around!!!

Not every home is bad, but I agree you have to be so careful. Sometimes circumstances change and things happen, but it has been an eye opening experience for me and I am so grateful that Blue now has a family that is totally committed to his care and giving him better care than I probably would. The woman is a stay-at-home mom so has time to pamper him and feeds him 4 times a day! They stated that, due the accident, if he is unable to be ridden, they will still keep him and take care of him!!!!

Blue deserves it and I re-homed him with every good intention. Sometimes STUFF happens!