FILTHY, SKIN and BONES: TOTAL, ABSOLUTE NEGLECT while with a trainer. Meet our June Bucket Fund Trio: Estelle, Gypsy and Royal.

The worst part, these horses came from a well known ‘Big-Lick’ Tennessee Walking Horse trainer.

This trainer has had 2 prior offenses and this is his third.  Yes, many people are working on making sure this guy never owns any animals again (sign petition here)…  His father turned him in.

56 horses on the premises.  Most of them in dire condition.

*Personally, what burns me the most here… Tennessee Walking Horses are a very gentle, forgiving, and docile breed.  They will do almost anything you ask – and therefore endure almost anything.  Both Finn and BG are TWHs.  It really pisses me off that some jerk would take advantage of their sweet natures.   This trainer was a bully and a fraud.  I am so angry.


Horrible treatment for this very docile and willing breed. This trainer took total advantage of their good nature. He is a bully and a fraud.


We can make a difference!  Your 100% tax deductible donation (Starbucks, seat change – any amount!) will add up and make a huge difference!

   If you receive this post via email, click here to donate!

Safe Harbor Equine and Livestock Sanctuary  (Safe Harbor FB linked here.)  agreed to take eight in the worst condition.  Here are the stories of the 3 most dire cases.

This is Estelle.

This is Estelle.

ESTELLE – left by rescuers to be euth’d, she was so bad…

(Described by Safe Harbor)  Estelle has a very sad story. The individual in charge of the seizure deemed Estelle to not be save-able. She was set to the side, in a paddock without food or water and after all of the horses were gone, Estelle was to be euthanized. She looked like she had been up to her neck in a swamp and was just a skeleton coated in mud. Still, there was something in her eye that let us know she wanted to live and she was willing to fight through this. We spoke to the individual in charge and after some persuasion were given permission to add Estelle to the list of horses we were taking. She amazingly made it to her foster farm standing. We were positive she would go down in the transport and have to be lifted. That was our first sign of many that Estelle was up for the challenge. We had all of her vitals checked and a blood panel run and got the great news that her organs are still functioning well and her heart is strong. Estelle is being re-fed with Thrive Feed–a very safe holistic feed that is exceptionally good for the most challenging cases. We drive over 120 miles round trip just to pick up this feed.


Click to watch Estelle's intake video - a bit gruesome.

Click to watch Estelle’s intake video – a bit gruesome.

Screen Shot 2015-06-02 at 1.53.47 PM

GYPSY – so skinny (and pregnant), she miscarried a week before rescue.

(Described by Safe Harbor) Gypsy was a Henneke body score of 1 and appeared pregnant at intake. Her condition was dire.  Our vet examined and determined that she had miscarried approximately 1 week prior to her seizure.  Gypsy appeared neurologic.  We tested for EPM and she came back 4x high positive.  She is being treated with Marquis and Vitamin E while we also work on her weight gain with Thrive Feed.  This beautiful mare has gone from falling while walking to mild trotting.  She can stand for longer periods of time without having to lay down.  She is due for an EPM recheck next month.  We anticipate another 30 days of Marquis will be needed ($800 cost!), but if this gives her recovery it is fully worth it.

Gypsy with Estelle.  Gypsy lost her foal a week before rescue.  Can you imagine her pregnant and in this state?!  Who would do this?

Gypsy with Estelle. Gypsy lost her foal a week before rescue. Can you imagine her pregnant and in this state?! Who would do this?

Royal – so filthy and unkempt in a tiny stall, he could no longer stand upright properly.  Bad feet, atrophied hips and no one knew he wasn’t black… until he was bathed.

(Described by Safe Harbor) Royal was the older stallion on the facility. He was black with a little white on his face–until his bath. 4 volunteers took 3 hours on his intake day to bathe and scrub. He loved every minute of it, and turned out to be a striking gray roan. Royal could hardly walk when we got him. His hooves were terribly overgrown and his hind end was totally atrophied. Our Dr. did not test Royal for EPM, but recommended treatment based on his symptoms and the positives with the two mares. Royal is about to start 30 days of treatment, and our veterinarian feels he will make a full recovery and even be ride-able. Royal is still intact and living at our stallion foster farm. This farm is set aside specifically for the boys that come to us intact so they never have contact with mares. He loves laying in the sun.  Royal is a horse who knows he has been saved, and is grateful for every minute of the life he has now.

Screen Shot 2015-06-02 at 1.58.50 PM

Royal could barely walk. His feet were so long, his hind end had atrophied. The old stallion was in a tiny, filthy pen.

WE CAN HELP heal the souls and all the wrongs done to these three innocent horses!  They need slow feeding recovery, their EPM medicines and lots of veterinary care.  Let’s help these three, wonderful and gentle horses!

Thank you in advance for your tax deductible donation!

  If you receive this post via email, click here to donate!

All cleaned up but with miles of recovery road ahead of them... Estelle, Gypsy and Royal.  Such sweet horses.

All cleaned up but with miles of recovery road ahead of them… Estelle, Gypsy and Royal. Such sweet horses.

To watch the donation thermometer rise, click here!

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

4 comments have been posted...

  1. LiL' Buckaroo Ranch

    We own a rescue ranch in Northern Nevada and see neglect cases often. I shed tears for every one we cannot save but luckily the horses and birds we rescue have an amazing will to live, and our success rate is higher by far than the losses. I respect and honor your mission and hard work, These particular cases are especially horrific and I would hope the person responsible paid dearly. We have learned that sadly, that is rarely the case.
    We have evolved into a program we call Equi-Share. We keep 12 rehabilitated horses at the ranch and share them with people who cannot have a horse of their own. We thrive on the smiles of these horse lovers, especially those who come to us to just touch one of these majestic steeds. It warms our hearts to hear the conversations they have with “their” horse. It is still one of the truest statements I have heard…”The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man”.
    Once a horse is taken into captivity, their nature is to please and be obedient. They trust and depend on us for everything that keeps them alive, except the spirit God gave them. That spirit is what has drawn good men to horses since there were horses. The trust they bestow on us as caregivers is to often unfounded and undeserved. If I could wish anything to change, it would be that mankind would be forever kind and respectful to animals. Since this will never happen, our little group, like your organization will continue to pick up the pieces, love and cherish and give them a chance at life for as long as they have the will to survive. Thank you for all that you do.
    I promise you that should we ever be in a position to contribute financially, beyond our over-crowed program, you will be the first on our list.
    Bless you all and hugs and kisses to these strong and wonderful horses.
    Bonnysue & Mike Moss
    Owners of LiL’ Buckaroo Ranch Nevada

  2. Mikey

    Oh, this is so sad. These horses look terrible. Years ago I bought the ugliest horse at the meat auction, because I knew only a kill buyer would buy her. She was a wreck. 10 days after I got her home she aborted a foal. I had no idea she was pregnant, she was such a bag of bones. 15 yrs later I still have her, she is 30 now, and will never have to go through that again. She’s been retired the last 10 yrs and lives out her days with her buddy. I hope these horses never have to go through this again either.

Post a comment!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *