Katrina, one of Mylestone's devoted vets, met me at a home that was looking to get rid of an old pony. From the outside, garbage and debris were strewn all over; in the back was a barn in disrepair with a small corral that was overgrown. We didn't see a pony, though the elderly owner told us she was in the barn. Katrina and I proceeded to the barn, where a board hanging in part of the entranceway closed the doorway. There was manure all over the outside of the entrance. The barn was filthy but you could tell it had just been cleaned out for our visit. The manure line along the walls was at least a foot high. There tied to the wall was a small black pony with long curled up hooves. She pawed wildly at us, as if to say, "Get me the heck out of here." She was covered in matted manure underneath her left side and belly. She was thin but had been getting some hay and grain they recently bought. Katrina and I agreed immediately we had to take her.
My friend Maryanne arrived with her trailer and Lizzy dragged Katrina and I out of the barn and on to the trailer. Lizzy had been alone and tied to the barn wall for at least 6 months. It is difficult to imagine day in and out being tied, barely able to turn around or lie down for all that time.
Lizzy was very happy to see other horses when she got here. We made a temporary area for her near our mini's, Lucy and Peppermint Patty. But Lizzy became very stressed out that she was not in the paddock with them, so rather than risk her hurting herself with her long hooves pacing, we put her in with the Lucy and Patty. The girls weren't sure what to think of her. Lizzy quickly calmed down and soon became very attached to Lucy.
Our next step was to take X-rays of Lizzy's hooves before Gil, our farrier, trimmed her. The results of her X-rays were shocking. Not only had she foundered in both front hooves, but her left hoof showed that an infection had eaten way a good chunk of her coffin bone. Katrina and the other vets were surprised she could even walk with the extent of the damage! Gil conservatively trimmed Lizzy's hooves while being sedated. We kept her on pain medicine as well. The reality is that her hooves are very deformed, but they most likely will stay that way since she is able to get around on them.
We have some other concerns as well, among them that she is afraid to lie down. One day we found her down and not able to get up. She had rolled and gotten too close to the fence. She was terrified but almost resigned. I realized later after we got her up that she must have gotten stuck while being tied in the barn and had to wait for who knows how long before someone helped her up. This is why we believe she doesn't lie down. She is also afraid of going in the shed; afraid she is going to be tied again. She has a lot of issues that we are hoping will get better with time. She is so cute and is now learning people aren't so bad ... at last she is fed, loved and most of all, free. Please consider sponsoring Lizzy or making a donation towards her ongoing care. It's well worth it - just take a look at how far she's progressed!