Angel and Gypsy. A very sad Sunday.

Sweet Angel. We will miss you. Run free, breath deeply and eat like a horse in Horse Heaven.


It is with a heavy heart I tell you that Angel had to be put down yesterday.  (Read Angel’s story here.)

With all of your help and prayers, she gained weight and was able to be transported to the equine hospital where specialists in wry mouth and cleft palates ran a series of tests. The specialists all put their heads together and determined that although Angel was surviving right now, her likelihood of thriving into the future was zero.  It seems that her birth defected soft palate was too compromised for any kind of surgery or prosthetic.  Soon, as she grew, her palate would not be able to stop the flow of food and drink from exiting her nose.  Most likely, she would aspirate it back into her lungs which would start a cycle of never ending pneumonia, infection and heartache.

No one there wanted to make the decision but it seemed that it was time to help this little girl pass without having to endure massive infection and pain.  Finally, it was decided and everyone surrounded her and loved her.

Thank you, readers, who expressed concern and sent positive thoughts.  All those that donated are so very appreciated as that money will go towards Angel’s massive vet bills.

To be able to pay for the vet bills during this time really does ease some of the pressure, if not the pain.

Thank you, Alaqua Animal Refuge, for doing all that you could for this filly.  And for making Angel’s last two weeks full of freedom, love and food.


Poor Gypsy’s little body could not recover from the liver poisoning.

(She was dumped in the woods near Alaqua where she ate poisoned plants to survive.)

Gypsy was in Alaqua’s care for over a month.  She had good days and bad days.  No one wanted to give up on her – and they didn’t.  Everyone was in love with Gypsy, especially Laurie the Director of Alaqua.


Laurie adored Gypsy and tried everything possible.

This is Gypsy in the mirror of the tack room with Laurie.

Right now, Laurie is just beside herself with grief.

Gypsy had totally stolen her heart.  She would sit in the tack room with Laurie and follow Laurie around wherever she went.  They had a bond.

Sadly, not all the powers of love and healing – of science and medicine – could save this girl.  Rest in peace, sweet Gypsy.

Run with health and gusto in Horse Heaven.



All of the funds collected for Angel will go to her vet bills.  Laurie is very grateful for your help in getting Angel to the specialty hospital.

For the rest of the month, I will search and find another needy equine.  Thank you all for your gifts of love, prayers, thoughts and funds.


If you’d like to leave a message for Laurie, please do so in the comment section below (or if you receive this by email, just ‘reply’).  I will make sure she receives all of your notes.


Angel was loved.

Gypsy was loved.


Thank you all for caring about me.

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!



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HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!

10 comments have been posted...

  1. Angie

    Laurie, I read with great sadness the passing of Angel and Gypsy. I’ve come to know you and the wonderful work you do from this blog and know what an amazingly big heart you have. It’s sad that sometimes a even with all your help, the body is too broken to be healed. You give the animals in your care perhaps the only love and caring they’ve ever felt, so at least when you are called on to do the kindness of releasing them from their pain, at the end they did get to know that love, and that’s what matters. My heart goes out to you and I’m sending you a big hug.

  2. Rachel

    You did the absolute best thing you possible could for these girls, and even though they were not in your care long you gave them love and that is the ultimate gift. Thank you for all the good that you do.

  3. Kelly

    So very sorry to read about Angel and Gypsy. They knew they were loved and were sent on ahead with love in their hearts. Godspeed, little girls.

  4. Minnie Little

    I know all to well how hard it is to try to save a horse by doing all you can, and losing the battle anyway. I have tried and succeeded and I have also tried and the outcome wasn’t favorable. You have to stay focused on the good days you made possible for the horses and all the love that the horses were feeling before they passed. God Bless you for taking the time to try. They are probably running over the rainbow bridge together happily trotting along pain free! <3

  5. Angelieke Van Leeuwen

    My heart goes out to you, Laurie!
    I love you for what you do for these horses and the deep love you have for them.
    My deepest sympathy,

  6. Linda Horn

    Laurie, my heart breaks for you and all those who helped care for these noble horses.

    Sometimes a perfect spirit cannot survive in an imperfect body. When the time comes, it’s our sad responsibility to help our animal friends to a place where they’ll be free of pain and the cares of this world.

    I know Angel, Gypsy and all the other animals who’ve been blessed by your love and compassion will meet you at the head of the Rainbow Bridge, and you’ll cross over together … companions forever.

  7. Maggie

    Oh crap. That is so sad. Losing both of them so close together is awful. I’m so sorry.

    Casey- We are in the same boat with older horses. Lost one in March who was 27, another in May who was 29 and we have another 29 year old who is going for x-rays of her bad knee this week. Depending on the what the x-rays show, we will have to make a decision in her best interest. Do what is right, not what our hearts tell us to.

  8. lena

    i am so sorry to hear about the horses, well atleast the horses had great love since you had them. my foal is doing fantastic at the moment, she was born with wry mouth but the vet and dentist has been to see her and they said she is doing really well. my fingers are crossed now that she continues to do a great job.

    my deepest sympathys goes to you and i hope you rescue some more much needed horses xxx

  9. Casey O'Connor

    My heart goes out to Laurie. With old horses, I see more than my share of death. It’s got to be killing her to lose such young animals, and particularly Gypsy. I face the loss of three of my old mares (as soon as I can afford it) and know her pain. You feel there MUST be something else you can do. If you wait just a little longer, maybe they can rally. But in the end, the best we can do for them is make their passing as quick and painless as possible. We take over Mother Nature’s job – we have to do it all, not just the easy or fun parts. Please let her know she did a great job, and these girls knew it. A true labor of love.

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