A Happy Ending to a Lost Horse Story


A story out of Tennessee shows the good that can happen when a group of people are committed to helping a stranger. In this case, the stranger was a pinto Mini Horse.

Veterinarians at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine rallied around the horse, who they called Tonka, when he was brought in after being hit by a car on Sunday night. Tonka had cuts and external injuries on a hind leg. While staff worked on cleaning and patching up his wounds, they also started to search for his owner; Tonka’s origin was unknown.

Fortunately, the horse’s owners saw UTCVM’s Facebook post with photos of Tonka (whose real name is Little Man) and quickly got in touch with the clinic. Tonka, aka Little Man, will be returning home to his people after a short recovery stay at the clinic.

“The most important thing is control of his pain,” said Dr. Jose Castro, a surgeon at the UTCVM. “We want him to be pain free, and we’re going to be continuing to monitor that he’s eating and drinking.”

Little Man will undoubtedly be happy to go home, but saying goodbye is never easy.

“He’s a favorite of all of us already, so he will be missed,” said Castro.

Leslie Potter is a writer and photographer based in Lexington, Kentucky. www.lesliepotterphoto.com

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Leslie Potter is a graduate of William Woods University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Equestrian Science with a concentration in saddle seat riding and a minor in Journalism/Mass Communications. She is currently a writer and photographer in Lexington, KY.Potter worked as a barn manager and riding instructor and was a freelance reporter and photographer for the Horsemen's Yankee Pedlar and Saddle Horse Report before moving to Lexington to join Horse Illustrated as Web Editor from 2008 to 2019. Her current equestrian pursuits include being a grown-up lesson kid at an eventing barn and trail riding with her senior Morgan gelding, Snoopy.



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