I died today.
Born four years ago in South Dakota, people hurt me from the day I entered this world. As a yearling, they threw a saddle and bridle on me.
They broke me.
They rode me so hard my feet hurt every day, my legs swelled, I couldn’t walk. They rode me harder, faster, I bled. They beat me until my skin was covered in scars.
Go faster, do better, work harder.
I wanted them to stop hurting me. But they didn’t. They beat me more.
They rode me until my feet cracked, came apart, and I couldn’t stand.
Three years in pain. Three years of beatings. Three years of abuse.
One day they put me on a truck. I hoped it was the end.
I travelled for hours. I was frightened. I came off the truck into a pen full of other broken horses.
I stood on my own. Waited for more pain.
Two ladies walked the lot. They stopped by me. They didn’t hit me or shout.
Maybe they would help me?
They packed me on a truck, and they drove me away to a place with other broken horses like me. They fed me gorgeous green hay. They looked at my feet. They spoke to me nicely. They cared.
They gave me a name.
Another lady came. I liked her. I chewed her hat. She laughed.
Maybe she could be my person?
She began coming every day. She brushed me, gave me treats. She taught me how to pick up my feet when asked, and not to be afraid of fly spray! She told me I had a home, and I was safe.
I was loved.
But then the pain came back.
I couldn’t walk, but still, I tried to follow her, I hopped after her. I wanted her to know that I could try. She hugged me and petted me and told me it was going to be ok.
The vet came, he took x-rays of my feet. He poked needles in me. The pain went away. I am worried. They don’t know my history. Will it be ok?
I have a home now, I have a person. I have a family. It has to be ok.
Yesterday, I tried my first apple, I wasn't a fan! My person read to me. I kissed her face and dumped hay on her head.
I’m happy. I like my new life. My person has a little boy. I kissed him too. They are kind.
I am at the vet.
My feet are degenerating. My hooves are broken. My tendons are failing.
There is no hope.
The vet gives me another injection.
I died today from abuse.
My name was Sheldon.
I was four.
Sheldon was diagnosed with advanced navicular, tendonitis, and healed coffin bone fractures. He was in constant and increasing pain, and there is no cure.
Thank you to Crystal Brady at Long Road Home Horse Rescue for giving Sheldon a second chance at happiness. I know your heart is as broken as mine today. Please consider a donation to WWW.COLORADOFEEDLOTHORSES.COM to support their ongoing rescue work.
*In memory of Sheldon - I ask that you find your nearest registered rescue organization - volunteer, donate money or food, or share their social media posts. Share this post - make others aware. No matter how small you feel your gesture is, you will help save a life.*