A Happy Update for Rio the Rescued Mini Horse

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Back in August of
2015, we brought you a story on two rescued horses, Quest and Rio,
who had been discovered after 15 years of neglect. The pair, along
with another horse called Piper, had been locked in their stalls with
minimal food and most likely no veterinary care. Most striking was
the result of their total lack of hoof care. The horses’ feet were
measured at approximately three feet long, so overgrown that they
curled back on themselves several times over.

The three horses
were rescued by the Humane Society of Washington County, Maryland,
and Days End Farm Horse Rescue with the hope that it wasn’t too
late for the horses to be rehabilitated with the veterinary and
farrier care and nutrition they had lacked for so long.
Unfortunately, Piper was euthanized at the farm due to the extent of
her injuries and neglect. But Quest and Rio moved to Days End Farm to
begin their recovery.

Reversing the
overgrown hooves in a case as severe as Quest’s and Rio’s isn’t
as simple as chopping off the excess hoof. It took months of careful
farrier work to bring their feet back to a near-normal length, and care
continues to get them to a condition that could be considered completely healthy. But both geldings are worlds ahead of where they were a
year ago. And just this month, Rio got the happy ending that rescuers
had hoped for. He has a forever home.

Herald-Mail Media
reports
that the Mini Horse was adopted by Michelle Marraccini, a
Days End Farm volunteer who has known Rio since he first arrived at
the rescue. His teeth and hooves are in much better shape and his
weight has reached a healthy level. He still has some lameness issues
that may never fully resolve, but he’s learning to trust humans and
live with other horses.

As for Quest, he has
completed his rehabilitation at Days End and is currently in the
evaluation/training phase before the rescue works to find him the
perfect home. Learn more at DEFHR.org.


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

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