Sunday, March 11, 2012
On Horses and Forgiveness
Leo was severely underweight - nearly skin and bones. He was contained in a dirt pasture along with two other horses (fat and happy beyond their feet in disrepair), a donkey, and a goat. The people also had a multitude of dogs, some intact, some not. They ranged in size, appearance, and age. Quite a collection! Back to the pasture - it was about the size of my house...which isn't big enough grazing area for one horse, much less all of those others. There was no grass, just some old beat up buckets they put horse feed in, and it was obvious Leo didn't stand a chance at getting to that food. The water was nasty. The worst part of it? The owners acted like there was nothing wrong. They were in the middle of setting up a brand new above ground pool...riding nice ATVs...nice cars under their garage...while a horse starves to death in their own backyard. His mane and tail were a matted mess (See the pic of me grooming him), and his skin was covered in rain rot. His hooves had gone so long without trimming that they had chipped down to nothing. He was also a gelding.
We took him home, and set him free in our green pasture. He found the fresh water first thing and drank like he hadn't tasted water in forever. The next few days, he didn't wander far from the water trough. We fed him horse feed and shredded beat pulp. We didn't introduce hay for a long time because of the rich proteins in it.
Leo was only 5 years old. The people we rescued him from had him for 2 years. 2 years! The other horse we took in was a 13 yo retired jumper - an Appendix Quarter Horse. He was a little underweight and had rain rot, but he bounced back in just a couple weeks.
I've always loved horses, and one day, my parents finally caved and bought me two of my own - a Racking Horse gelding named Charlie and an Appaloosa mare named Molly. Charlie was sweet, but he was skittish. Molly was my favorite. She was a sweet butterball of a horse, and she let me climb all over her, walk underneath her, all with the patience of a mother hen. There was a lady my parents knew that had gone to the church my dad preached at. She was getting married and wanted to borrow Molly for her wedding. My parents let her. Well...she never brought her back. Instead of doing the right thing and going to get my horse, my parents, after not reaching her on the phone, sent her a letter stating to return Molly or send x amount of money for her. She sent a check. My parents should have gone and brought her back, or involved the police. They didn't because it would "look bad on the church." So I lost my horse. The first and only horse I've ever loved. It's taken me a long time to forgive them for these actions, and I'm still not sure I've quite forgiven the woman that took Molly away from me. Well, maybe forgiven, but definitely not forgotten.
I have to go now - Axle doesn't have the zoomies, but he certainly has le gas! I'm going to hang out on the OTHER SIDE OF THE HOUSE NOW!!!