Sunday, April 8, 2007

8 April 2007

I have been very distracted the past three days and here is the reason. I sent my bottle baby Wiggle to a "trainer" in January to be broke to ride so that I could sell her. It was a very hard decision for me to make because she is my baby, I hand reared her and she is like my child. Unfortunately hand raising a baby horse has its disadvantages in that we tend to treat them like children which is a mistake because when they get bigger they tend to think that they can treat you like another horse and when they weigh 1000 lbs that is a no no. They are not being mean, just have an identity crisis LOL.

Well with the weather being as it has over the past 3 months the trainer wasnt getting the time to put the hours in that we had agreed on so the 45 days extended to 3 months and we were starting to get worried because every time we made an arrangment for him to bring her and the other horse of ours (our older stud) over to see their progress he cancelled at the last minute. This has been going on for 3 weeks. Eventually I had an enquiry from a Lady in Minnesota who wanted to come and see her this weekend, a 12 hour drive each way, so this was a serious enquiry. We agreed with her that we would have to get the horse over here and then make the arrangements, originally she wanted to drive down on Friday and see her on Saturday morning, but we wanted her here before we made the final arrangement. The trainer eventually got back to us on Thursday evening at about 9pm and said he would bring her over the next evening when I was back from the hospital/doctor.

He called me the next day to tell me he was getting ready to come over and I asked him to please bring the other horse too because my husband was still home and he would like to see him too. He arrived at about 5.15 and had already lead Wiggle out of the trailer and was looking for a stall to put her into by the time I got outside. I was horrified at what I saw. I didnt confront him (I hate confrontation) just asked him why she was so thin, he just fobbed it off with excuses, I let it go and suggested that as it was so late he might unload the other horse and I would make a stable vacant for him so that he could come over the next day to do the cleaning up and riding of the horses. He agreed.

When he had left I had to tell my husband what I had seen. He is bedbound so I opened up the blinds on the bedroom window and paraded both horses for him to see. Dosie was not as bad but was still thin and dirty but Wiggle was dreadful, I estimate she had lost at least 250 lbs. These pictures dont convey the scene very well because the white and winter coat tend to make her look not so bad but believe me this horse is thin. She used to have a groove running along her spine over her hindquarters, now she has her tail bone sticking up about 2 inches and her spine along her back is sticking up about 1cm and I can count every bump in her spine. She has been laying in manure because the stable or wherever she has been keps was not kept clean and dry and this tends to matt on the hair and burn the skin resulting in the hair falling out and leaving sore bare patches. She has a big bump on her nose,probably from a stud chain being used on her to load her into the trailer which I can imagine she didnt want to do as it was obvious that this horse had not been ridden, he had me believing that she had and that three children had been riding her and that they had been trail riding two weeks before. If she had been ridden in this state that in itself is a crime, she is in no shape to be ridden period. Anyway here are a few pics that I took to compare to the ones above. Half of her tail has been chewed off too.

There are more here for those of you who may be interested.

It is going to take months to rehabilitate this mare, it breaks my heart. The lady who was interested was called as soon as I saw the mare and I told her the whole story and she told me that she was only really looking to buy a horse in May and that she would still like first refusal on her and to be kept posted about her progress. It sounds like a wonderful home for her so I hope this works out, and this one I am sure of.

So those of you who have read this far, thanks all for your concern and messages, I appreciate them. I promise I will get back into my catching up on blogs and comments soon. I just have to get my bearings back.

((((((HUGS))))))) to you all and thanks.



Donna said...

Oh my gosh, that is horrifying! I hope you have gotten all the money back that you paid this idiot for training. You should sue him, although I'm not sure for what, this just makes me so mad. I'm so sorry and know you will tend this poor creature back to health.

Rising Rainbow said...

Way to go, Lori. I know it was hard for you to do this post but I commend you for bringing the issue to the light of day.

Julie Blair said...


This just breaks my should at least report this guy. He has to be mistreating alot of horses and he should be ashamed to return a horse in this condition. I would report him to whatever animal activist in your area and spread the word! Put him out of business!! I know your love will bring back the previous beautful condition.

Kaycee said...

Oh, your poor babies! I just can't understand how people are so cruel to animals. It breaks my heart. I am sure that you will give them plenty of love and TLC.

CG said...

Oh Lori, poor poor Wiggle and poor Dosie. No wonder you are so upset.I thought your worries may be to do with the horses. They must have been so bewildered and scared.
I know you'll make them feel ok again but this sort of thing is so cruel :(


DannyEquestrianCupid said...

I read with horror regarding those horses. Some people can be so cruel and neglectful. I met somebody through EquestrianCupid recently and they also spoke of the cruetly some of their horses suffered at neglectful owners. I hope they recover soon.

Equestrian Cupid

Mike said...

People can be so cruel to animals. I can see from your pictures why you were so upset. I hope everything turns out ok in the end.

I find it hard to find words at this point to say about this it is very upsetting.

You guys take care.

Anna said...

What an awful story Lori.

It just breaks my heart to hear it and even more to see these pictures. Do you have legal recourse for neglect?

Please keep us updated and take care.

talj said...

{{{HUGS}}} for you all Lori. Thinking of you xxx

Bev Ferrington said...

I'm speechless. I've had horses in training for many years, and I've always had excellent luck with their care. One thing that I've always done is to visit the horses at the trainer's often. Sometimes with notice and sometimes without. I know you've been consumed with weather, your husband, your projects and your day to day responsibilities which alone are a full time job, but I bet from now on you'll make time to visit your horses at the trainer's more often. It's the only way to keep on top of what's going on.

If this comes in duplicated, it's just 'user error'...((g))

Kathy C said...

Lori I am so sorry to see these pictures and read this. I can only imagine how sick you must feel. Especially for Wiggles, you babe.

Hang in there and take comfort in the fact that they are at home and you can start rehabilitating them.

Don't worry about catching up on blogs, we all know you've been busy and now this on top of it! (((hugs)))

L said...

Oh no, how awful! I cannot figure out HOW people can ever do this to animals - my own horse was abused before I got her, and I just cannot believe a person can SLEEP while they are letting stuff like that happen!

I saw the rest of the photos - ouch. I will be praying for comfort and healing for you and your husband and the 2 horses, and justice for the "trainer."


Sharon said...

Poor wiggle - hope she gets better now she is back with you. The guy should be left in a dirty stable with no food and see how he likes being treated badly. Unbelievable.

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