A Survival Story – Meet Tullie.


Don’t get me started on Stoopid Human Tricks…  This one could be the winner for the Most Stoopid of All Stoopid Human Tricks.

Here goes…


Tullie. She couldn't stand but she could eat...

You are probably asking  yourself, “What in the world happened to this horse?”  Nuclear waste spilled on her?  Acid?  She slipped and fell into a poisonous pond?

What happened to this horse?

Nope.  Her owners did this to her.  You see, poor Tullie was suffering from Rain Rot (we won’t go into the ‘whys’ of that here).  Her owners mistakenly thought that she had the canine disease of mange, so they mixed lime with auto transmission fluid and poured it all over her body.

Her topline where they poured the "mange cure"...


Ow. Can you imagine? Lime and transmission fluid.

First of all, even if she did have canine mange, that is not how one should treat any animal, mange or no mange.  But, regardless, my mouth is on the ground over this one.

Her ears and mane.


I don’t know the details on how Cheri from HORSE FEATHERS EQUINE RESCUE, INC came to treat poor Tullie, but I know she got her just in time.  The young mare was 400 lbs underweight — no surprise there — with burns over 70% of her body.  She lost the tips of her ears and was in severe pain.

Immediately, Tullie was rushed to the equine hospital.  Her Albumin levels were at 2 (a normal range is approx 30).  Tullie wouldn’t survive much longer so she was given two pints of plasma right away.   Everyone held their breath to see if she would turn the corner.

Cheri said that she knew Tullie would make it because the poor, sick, wounded, hurting little filly wanted to eat and drink all the time, even at the hospital while she was on death’s door.

She wanted to eat and drink. She wanted to live.


Slow.  As with human burn victims, the process is slow and there is always the risk of infection.  Everything has to be done methodically and with very sterile-minded precautions in place.

Tullie couldn’t stand for long periods of time so Cherie had 3-5 volunteers hold her up while they treated her.  Can you imagine how much this must have hurt?!  But, she did it.

First, they started with debridement of the worst areas.  Tullie handled this without sedation.  Without sedation.  VERY BRAVE MARE, INDEED.

Then, they used a mixture of Aloe Vera Gel and Lidocaine to numb and heal the area.  The areas that they could clean, were treated with Tea Tree oil and Clorhex.  This process took months…


Cherie said that no one ever gave up because Tullie never gave up.  In her words:

“She has so much spirit and all she wanted to do was to eat and drink constantly.  Her body needed all it could get to heal inside and out.”

Tullie ate, drank, gained strength, dealt with the pain, dealt with the constant salve applications and dressings, forced herself to move about to gain muscle strength and slowly but surely, she healed.

When she was strong enough to stand, she could graze.


Tullie was healing but not gaining enough weight.  Having low Albumin greatly effects fat absorption and the liver.  But, her liver was good so it was time to add a fat supplement her feed.  After Cherie tried just about every product out there, Tullie finally started to gain the necessary fat with a product called Envision by Progressive.  She says that it is expensive but this product is all that she will use now because it works the best.  In fact, she uses it on all her horses who need to gain or who are difficult to build.

She was healing but very thin. She needed a fat supplement.


Some kind donor sent this product to Cherie to use on Tullie’s new skin.

This human product really helped heal Tullie's skin.

It is made via honey bees.  Hospital burn units now use this with human patients.  It really helped with healing by keeping the moisture in the skin.  Here is the link if you’d like to try it.

Healing... That fat supplement, Envision, really seemed to work.


She is almost all healed, physically.  It took 3 years.  3 YEARS!  That is devotion…  Thank you, Cherie.

Healed on the outside! Just like a normal horse!

Cherie had this to say about Tullie now:

“There were many times I wondered if she would make it but Tullie seemed to love being the “auntie” to the babies we had born here.  Tullie does have a standoffish attitude with new people… I can’t say I blame her.   She is here, she is alive and she is happy.”

It took 3 years... but she's happy and healthy thanks to Cheri.


Click here if you’d like to donate/sponsor Tullie and get a donor gift certificate to give as a gift for the Holidays!



Well, our Bucket Fund for this month, THE WILD MUSTANGS AND BURROS, has stalled a bit.  It is still early and I am very appreciative of those who have donated!!  But, I want to remind us about the incredible opportunity here to tangibly help the mustangs through DREAMCATCHER Sanctuary who has an opportunity to lease another 20,000 acres to release more gathered and captured mustangs and burros.  Please click here to donate so the HORSE AND MAN Group can become a benefactor.

How good would that feel?

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!
The November Bucket Fund will benefit The Wild Horses and Burros, via DreamCatcher Sanctuary.  We are helping them acquire an additional 20,000 acres to release more captured Mustangs/Burros back into the wild.  To learn all about the Bucket Fund and to donate to this incredible opportunity for our Mustangs,  please click on the photo.

Click to help the mustangs!

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

27 comments have been posted...

  1. Beamer

    What in the world possessed them to think transmission fluid was good for the skin, period?? Some people are just beyond help when it comes to common sense. Dx

  2. RT

    Wow we have been without internet for two weeks, I couldnt get online for holidays or anything. Sighs… I had a horse come in to help rehab that had a bad leg injury, she is doing well and is now at her new home.

    Betty–great to see you here hun…

    I want to thank everyone for their comments. Tullie was from- a fabric–sheer that we used to cover her skin as she couldnt have a regular sheet on. Her skin needed to breathe. Its used in wedding veils, etc.

    Owners were never found, Im not sure if I posted it before. There is no statute of limitations if we do find them on animal cruelty. She was passed through 4 people before got here. I ‘heard’ she went through an auction also.

    Tullie, I call her Tullie Bear since she lost her ear tops is silly. She ‘pretends’ to hate everyone but it is her way of keeping distance until she trusts. I get her up close and you can see her saying–stop luvin on me grammie… I tease her all the time. She just has a personality that you can love.

    We can always use donations to help here. Tullie has now about outgrown her blanket and needs a new one. She wears a 74. Got a butt on her now. So if someone would like to help with getting her one that would be appreciated.


    RT (cheri)

  3. Tania Collier

    Thank you for sharing this inspiring, sad and moving story of courage, love and sheer determination. We can learn a lot from horses (in fact from many animals if we just stopped and watched/listened). Tullie has shown that no matter what is or has happened in your life, when the love of people who care is there to help support you, you can take on anything… and she certainly did that!

    I am so glad to have had the opportunity to have read this wonderful story… after reading and learning about so many other horses who are no so fortunate it is heart warming to see that at least one has made it through.

    Good luck Tullie (and to all the people who took part in her long healing process) may your meadows always be filled with sweet green grass.

  4. Cathy Hill

    What a truly remarkable story, I wish the outcome for my Tessa had been as good. We sent her to a well known trainer, with a good reputation and had 3 personal friends who gave him a good reference but something went horribly wrong and they abused her so badly that after months of care, she ended up having to be euthanized.
    Please visit her website to see my dear Tessa’s story. It’s been years now and I still grieve for her her and miss her terribly and cry.

  5. Zack Thompson

    This is just insanity. First of all Transmission fluid is caustic to begin with and lime is very acidic. I can’t believe someone would do this. Just horrible. Wonderful that Tullie is healing though. Tragic and happy T THE SAME TIME. ~~Peace~~

  6. Betty Cordoza

    Although I sponser another horse at Horse Feathers, I was in on the get-go with Tullie, and made small financial donations, and suggestions for her care. Tullie and Cheri went through Hell, getting Tullie to where she is today! She is lovely, if a bit obstreporous. (Tullie, not Cheri. Cheri is just lovely.) Whenever Cheri and I speak on the phone, I always inquire as to how beautiful Tullie is doing.

    I can’t remember what happened to the former owners of Tullie. However, maybe Cheri will be kind enough to refresh my memory and enlighten those who have asked about Tullie’s former owners. Cheri?

  7. Sue Savage

    OMG, I cannot believe humans. I am practically speechless as to the atrocious acts some of us so called “intellegent species” do to animals. What sort of sick pleasure do they get. I am so glad she found Cherie. It really bought tears to my eyes when I read this story.
    Give Tullio an extra carrot and a big hug and kiss from me.
    Congratulations, you need a medal for what you have done.
    The people who did this need the same treatment they gave Tullio so they can experience the same pain and suffering she went through.

  8. Wendy McDonnell

    I am so glad you perservered with this lovely horse. Horses are just so amazing: they are the light of my life. Congratulations – please give her a kiss for me.

  9. Bill Barnard

    There really is no limit of cruelty humans can do. Just study our history. But to deliberately harm an innocent animal that only wants to please, now that is beyond comprehension. These animals are not a threat to us. They ask for love and they give love. We are the custodians of this planet. We need each other to survive. Horses are majestic animals and should be treated with kindness and respect.
    Sometimes I wish people would act as kind as I’ve seen animals act. My heart’s desire is to see Tullie live a healthy and happy life here with us.

  10. Gina Muha

    Looks like you did an amazing job on Tullie, great work! You might want to try some Izmine from Dynamite to help balance her out…it would really help her I bet. I was just curious about her name. Tullie is my maiden name and an odd name for a horse. I am praying that I am not related to these idiots.

  11. Sue

    God bless you for caring for Tullie. The only comfort animal lovers have in this world is knowing that, for every cruel and despicable person like the one who did this to Tullie, there is someone like you providing exceptional care and love.

  12. Lux

    This story left me in tears. Thanks so much for all the time, money, work, and kindness you all put in to heal this horse! It’s nice to see that there are horse people out there who are in it for much bigger reasons than success in the show ring. Tullie is very lucky to have found you!

  13. mary eagle-frith

    i cannot believe how stupid some people can be even if it was mange why would you put transmission fluid on the poor thing, that maks me sick! for everyone that cares for animals and makes a diffence i take my hat off to you.

  14. Elaine

    I have never seen anything like this. How could someone do this? I cannot imagine what type of person could have been so cruel. What a miracle to see this horse survive against all odds. My hat goes off to these dedicated folks, must have been heart breaking but thank God you stuck with it cause she is a beauty.

    Jail or worse for the inhuman s.o.b. that did this.

  15. Donna

    What I would like to know is the “Paul Harvey Rest of the Story”… What happened to the owners who did this to this mare??? Inquiring minds want to know. If they got little more than a ‘slap on the wrist’ then I will finally believe with ALL finality…there is NO justice in this world. :)

  16. Denise Elmendorf

    Stupid human trick is not what comes to my mind when I look at this poor baby. This is purely a case of stupidy, ignorance and cruelty!!! This person or persons need to be charged with cruelty as well as neglect! Thank God you were able to save this horse. What horrible pain this animal must have gone though. People this stupid should not own any animals. Rain rot is a very common affliction, and not difficult to treat, if you know what to do. These awful people probably couldn’t be bothered calling the vet. If you don’t know the difference between mange and rain rot, you have no business owning a horse or any other animal for that matter. So many people get horses and they don’t know how to care for them properly. Buy a book, ask questions, educate yourself on proper horse care, or don’t get a horse!!

  17. Cynthia

    Truly amazing will to live. I am so greatful to the human angels who helped to save this beautiful creature. It is truly a miracle.

  18. judith crosby

    why are people so dam cruel..is my question..what in the hell do they get out of being cruel and inhuman to an innocent animal who only wants your love and care!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! dam!!sometimes, actually often times..i hate humans!!!!!!!!!!

  19. Cheryl

    Why are people so stupid. Don’t they know how to pick up the phone and call or at least ASK a vet.

  20. Vicki Boling

    I might add that with the “remedy” of motor oil for mange, I have no idea that it worked. I just remember my dad doing it when I was a small kid. The dogs did clear up. But it may have been from the oil tasting so bad, that they just left the stuff alone, and it healed on its own. I just have no idea as to if, how or why it may have or have not worked.
    I’a appalled at the condition weight wise on this horse. If the owners were stupid enough to pour that mixture on the sad critter, that’s one thing. But why the heck didn’t they feed it? I sure hope that charges were brought on these folks. If nothing else, they should NEVER be allowed to own any animal again!

  21. Vicki Boling

    WOW! I have no idea as to what to say!
    Being from the country, we have used the old remedy of used motor oil on mange on the dogs. But how they figured transmission fluid and LIME??
    Anyway, I was brought to tears at the dedication shown for this poor horse! She needed a true friend and God bless, She found one!! I hope you all are happy for many, many years to come! What a story!

  22. cruelgirll

    wowwwwwwww…….this is a heartbreaker for sure….but brought tears of joy…..what a story…….cherie….you are an angel for sure………

  23. RT

    Yes, we did use that fabric, It worked for the period of time we needed it to as we could not cover the areas that needed to ‘breathe’ and also could not use any fly spray products at all. Even the all natural stuff we had to be very cautious of what went on her and where.

    The owner of Beeceuticals sent the product to us in a case and also sent a donation to help with her vet bill which exceeded 3K over time.

    Tullie does very well with babies but she sure thinks she runs the pasture. She is not afraid of tractors, trucks, etc. She actually will try to get on trailers(low ground ones) so we have to shoo her off constantly and she gets really mad and tosses a fit.. Its like she has to explore everything that comes into her area and give her approval.

    Good to see you Rose.. We hope she can get some sponsors/angels as we are going to work on the areas that are still healing and have some wee hairs growing. Her vet and I are discussing options.

  24. rose

    Did Cherie tell you how Tullie got her name? She needed a very light weight fly sheet so RT used the fabric tulle (sp?) to keep the critters off her sores. I don’t think it worked for long but nwo that sweet girl has a beautiful name. RT is amazing with those poor sick, injured horses.

  25. Shiriah

    Oh my God!! This is both horrific and an amazing story at the same time. Tullie looks almost identical to my daughters little quarter pony, Cherry….

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