|Ali and Star|
|We had been looking for a Paint and were told that several would be available
at the Middleburg auction in PA. We went down that Saturday and rode several
horses and decided on the one that we wanted. I always go look at all the
horses to make sure that there wasn't something else we would be interested
in. When walking through the pen labeled "SLAUGHTER HORSES ONLY"
we saw this poor looking grey that seemed to have such a kind eye to him.
My youngest daughter ran right up to him and said she wanted to take him
home. I went over and started looking him over and it was very obvious that
he had strangles. We started giving him carrots and sugar cubes and Ali
fell in love with him on the spot. I told her to hurry up because the auction
was about ready to start and we sadly left him. I knew I would have to have
quarantine facilities to bring him home and I couldn't provide that. We
went up and sat down and they announced they were bringing the meat horses
through first and who came through first was the sad looking grey. My daughter
stood right up on her seat and yelled at the top of her lungs that he couldn't
get killed that she loved him and started hysterically crying and telling
me I had to buy him. Not knowing what I would do with him, I started bidding.
We got up to $500 and the meat men stopped bidding and he was ours. Not
knowing anything more about him than that he was a very sick horse, I starting
calling a few friends of mine who I knew had quarantine facilities at their
barns and hoping one of them could take him. I finally was able to reach
a friend of mine who said she would get the stall ready and would be on
her way ASAP.
Middleburg does have a vet on the premises and I had him draw a coggins and waited around for the results. He gave me the run down on strangles and said that if this turned into bastard strangles he more than likely wouldn't survive. I said I would take my chances and went up to pay for him. When we paid, we all were totally shocked when we were handed his papers. The man that handed them to us said, "looks like you got yourselves a good deal." I snapped back, "no, this guy was lucky - just think, he was headed for slaughter."
We went down and loaded him up and said our good-byes to him and Ali gave him lots of lovins and told him we would be over later in the evening with the vet. We loaded up our other purchase we made that day and headed for home. After getting "Lucky" settled, we headed over to see "Star." The vet met up with us and after confirming that he did have strangles, gave him a few injections of antibiotics and left us with what didn't sound to be a very promising outlook. I was determined that this guy had been through so much, that he wouldn't be leaving us any time soon. For the next week we made two trips a day to visit with him and to give him his medication. He and Ali became very attached in this time and it seemed as though he knew she saved him. We had the vet back out in a week to check him again and he was so surprised at his progress. I said he knew he couldn't disappoint the one that saved him. He spent 45 days in quarantine and after getting a clean bill of health, we brought him home.
We gave him some time to recuperate and then took him to our trainer and had her work with him. He has turned out to be such a gentleman. He loves the attention the girls give him and is very attached to Ali. He will be making his debut this summer at a few local shows where Ali will be showing him in the short stirrup division. I'm sure the both of them will do very well. He trusts her as much as she trusts him. The two are practically inseparable. When she gets home from school he is waiting at the gate for her and stands there until she goes down to visit.
We are so glad we went to that auction that day and helped save such a young life from the jaws of death. He has made such a huge difference in all our lives - we are very proud of him!
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