Tuesday, May 12, 2009

How would you handle this?

I am STEAMED. We went to the house of some people we know the other night (I won't name names) and I saw their horses for the first time in a while. I noticed one was walking like he was lame, shortening his strides on one side, and looked awkward trying to get up into a trot (much less a canter), so I looked at his feet — and guess what? They haven't been trimmed in probably almost a year!

So I told the owner that one of the horses was throwing his head way to one side like he was lame, and he immediately said, "He's always done that." Ummm... Always walked like he was lame? I don't think so! But I was so shocked and upset by the nonchalance that I neglected to mention the shortened strides and the difficulty trying to run.

Then I mentioned that his feet really need done, and the owner simply said, "I don't have the money to do it." As if the problem will just go away because (you say) you're broke!

I am SO angry. I know they buy crap for their kids, and they recently bought a bunny too. It makes me so angry when people add to their responsibilities rather than following up on the ones they've got.

This is an extremely difficult person to talks to. He's very alpha-male type, and I'm always a lot more successful planning my approach than carrying it out with people like him. He cuts you off and doesn't let you finish, and gets angry if you're saying something like this. But at the same time, I am angry seeing how his horses are suffering — all because he can't admit that if he can't afford their upkeep, he shouldn't have them in the first place.

Have you ever been in a situation where someone you know, someone close to you even, neglects their animals in ways that would earn them a report to Animal Control if it were anybody else? How have you handled it? Or if you haven't had a similar situation happen to you, how would you handle it? I'm totally at a loss, but I'm so angry I know I can't do nothing!



At May 12, 2009 at 9:27 PM, Blogger Nuzzling Muzzles said...

The blogger over at http://strawberry-lane.blogspot.com/ found a horse that was starving, among other things, and she tried reasoning with the owner. Her friends attempted feeding the horse at their expense and the owner got on the defensive and said they had to stop. It's difficult to deal with human egos. Anyway, you might want to look for her posts about rescuing that horse to get an idea of how difficult some horse owner's can be.

I'd probably report it to animal control.

At May 12, 2009 at 10:35 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Thanks, NM, I'll check out those posts.

I sent you an email about this, but it's not really something I feel comfortable about reporting at this juncture. I'm too close to the person and it would create some major rifts. So for now I'm going to have to try another avenue.

Hopefully I'll be able to glean some wisdom from that other blogger's posts.

At May 14, 2009 at 4:10 PM, Blogger Laughing Orca Ranch said...

Last year I reported someone for having horses with long...long feet. And I mean looong. They were literally like elf slipper feet. Several of the horses had to HOP to walk. There were two that could only SHUFFLE because both the front and back feet curved up and over into their LEGS! gah!

I contacted the Live Stock Board and within a week they were over there instructing the negligent and naive owners on what to do for hoof care.
They said they had rescued the horses several months and believed in NATURAL HOOF care....which apparently meant, "No FARRIER WORK??"

Ironically the people who owned those horses own a bunch of camels that are leased out to the zoo for camel rides. I suppose they knew how to take care of camels better than they did horses.

I plan on checking on them at the end of this month, during the fiber tour. (camera in hand, if needed)


At May 14, 2009 at 4:17 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Lisa, good for you. It always amazes me the excuses deadbeats will come up with to evade their responsibilities as horse owners.

If something doesn't get done with the horses I talked about in my post, I may well have to resort to reporting them. But I'll have to wait a little while at least, since I did, after all, mention it to the owner just the other day.

Unfortunately, they live at the end of a rarely-traveled dirt road, so they'll probably still know it was me.

At May 14, 2009 at 4:20 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

By the way -- this horse's hooves aren't yet curling up, but they look like the only direction they have left to grow is up. He was hobbling and hopping trying to get up into a canter, so I'm sure it's making it difficult for him to get around.


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