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Im In A Bit Of A Pickle!


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#1 Codi

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Posted 15 April 2012 - 10:22 PM

Im new here. I created an account because i need some advice. Let me start from the beginning. On friday, my friend and I were driving through a very small town and we got lost. Trying to find our way back to the main road, we wound up on this very long dirt road with nothing around but desert. A good ways down, we passed the skinniest horse ide ever seen! She was just standing by the road on the other side of a barbed wire fence, just begging for help! We turned around and stopped to take a closer look. The poor girl was skin and bones! She was left out there to die. And she was very close. I picked some grass by the side of the road to feed her, but she wouldnt let me get close to her. I set the grass down on a flat rock and walked away to see if she would take it. She wouldnt while we were standing there. So of course I wasnt going to leave her out there to die. I went home (its about an hour drive) and got 18 gallons of water (that was all i could bring in gallon jugs in the back of my truck), a water trough, and a bail of timothy grass hay. The poor lady was sucking down the water faster than i could pour it. she was EXTREMELY dehydrated! Thats why she wasnt eating. After she drank nearly all of the water i brought, she started to graze on the hay. The next day i went back with about 35 gallons of water to fill her bucket all the way up. She was looking SO much better! she was even grazing on live grass. Im pretty sure she has no water source out there. Ive got to get her out of there. Who ever owns her wouldnt even notice or care. Tomorrow, im going to call some horse rescue places and the livestock board. They will surely be able to give me a number of someone who can help. My concern is that she isnt halter broke. She acts like shes never even seen a person before. And if she has, im sure it wasnt a very good experience. Shes beginning to trust me a little more. she even put her muzzle in my hand while she was drinking from the other side of the fence. But that was when she was on her death bed. now that shes feeling better, she isnt so friendly. Its not like shes in a small pen. Shes got MILES of land to run off to. Even if i am able to find a legal way of taking this mare from someones land, how am i going to halter break her? and get her into a trailer? Its also trespassing for me to go over the fence (shes in the middle of nowhere, so im not too worried about that). But i cant keep making the hour drive every day to give her water. Ive got to bring her home and get her to a vet! Any advice??? Also, ive got a 4 horse stock trailer. Because she isnt halter broke, and shes never been tied, would it be best to let her roam free within the trailer? Im just afraid she might try to climb out and break her leg! I have never delt with a horse as unbroke as she is.

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#2 BelleoftheBall

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 12:42 AM

Oh dear, this is a dilemma! If I were you I would contact the authorities....sheriff, humane office or something. They will know what to do, find the owner and figure out what is going on. Please don't do anything to put yourself in jeopardy, this could all turn against you. Certainly this is an animal that deserves help but please let the authorities handle it! Perhaps someone else on here who is more knowledgeable will jump in and offer more advice???

#3 BelleoftheBall

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 12:44 AM

Codi - where ever you are from, please call the sheriff!

#4 Wild Rose

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 07:22 AM

Oh, the poor thing! Yes, call the sheriff, or anyone that you think could help.

About the stock trailer. I am no expert, but they haul mustangs all the time loose in a trailer. Once the trailer is moving, most horses are pretty busy keeping their balance, to jump around.

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#5 Codi

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 07:36 AM

Thats my first plan of action. Im worried because its out in the middle of nowhere! im not sure who to call! But like i said, ive got a few #s to call and surely they can tell me who can help. Another thing that concerns me is that the kill yards around here are jam packed with horses that the owners are not able to feed or take care of. I heard the horse rescue places arnt able to help anymore either because they are worried they wont have any room for another horse. This is a pretty common thing around here to see. I guess people have been turning their horses out in the wild to hope they can fend for themselves because they cant feed them anymore. im worried they get this kind of call all the time, and theres nothing they can do, just because there is no room. It breaks my heart, but i cant leave a horse in need. But i guess i wont know until i call. The hours for all of these places start at 8. so right at 8 im going to call around. Ill keep you all posted! Hopefully she will be out of that place by the end of the day!! Wish me luck!!

#6 Colspal

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 08:19 AM

People make me sick!
Anyway- her feet look like they have been taken care of, but she is so dehydrated and so sucked up. Please, call the authorities like already mentioned. This could come back and bite you, in a very bad way. If the authorites wo't do anything, contazct your local news station, they would be all over this!!
Good luck and PLEASE, keep up posted on this poor girl.
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#7 teampenninglady123

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 09:35 AM

I'm sorry...but plan of action should have occurred at the beginning:

"Friend and I got lost and came up on this half dead horse with no water. My friend immediately called 911 and the sherriff came out and....."

Edited by teampenninglady123, 16 April 2012 - 09:54 AM.

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#8 DawnC

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 04:43 PM

Yes, you will be trespassing if you enter the property. You will be committing theft if you remove the horse w/out some form of legal backup.

Call the authorities, local sheriff would be a good place to start. Find a mailbox on the same road and do some searches on Google Maps to try to locate the physical address. Do a CAD search for the City/County and see if you can figure out the owner of the property (combine a CAD search of the road name you are on along with using Google maps to try to matcht it up).

Perhaps it is something as simple as a water pump failure that the owner is not aware of.

I'd very much NOT recommend pursuing this much further without having the local authorities involved.

#9 Codi

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 05:20 PM

I did call the moment i found her. i was told to call on monday (today) which is what i did. Also, there is no address or house or anything. Its a bunch of land, fenced in with barbed wire. All I've done on my own is give the poor horse some water which has kept her alive over the weekend. So i called the horse rescue this morning. I told her the entire situation. All she did was get mad that i gave the horse water, saying that if the inspector comes, and there is water for the horse, he will leave without giving it a second thought. Even though i just told the woman that I gave the horse the water to keep the poor thing alive over the weekend while they were at home, because they dont work weekends!! So i asked what i should do! She said get the water out so the inspector doesn't see it. Then she tells me the inspector will be out to see her in anywhere from 1 to 5 days!!!! She expects me to leave this horse with no water for a possible 5 days!?!?!?!?! NO!! HECK NO!!! I was so angry!!! I decided i was NOT going to leave the horse without water, and if the inspector came and left without checking out the situation, i was going to have to figure something else out! Find some way to figure out whose horse that was and ask them if i could just take it off their hands. Everything about this is so wrong!! But then the horse rescue lady called me back. she said someone called about the same horse LAST WEEK!!!!!!! And the inspector drove by, didn't see a horse, and forgot all about it! The filly has miles of land to roam! He obviously didn't even get out of his truck, because every time i go out there, even if she's not right by the road, she knows someone is out there and will start walking up. She's just begging for help!!!!!! But i guess because this is the second call on the same horse, hes going to go out tomorrow morning. So because of that, i did leave her with no water. If its going to get that guy to take her out of there, its worth it. and ill probably go out first thing in the morning and give her water. hopefully i run into the inspector.

#10 DawnC

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 05:26 PM

Hate to tell you, but they gave you good advice on that one.

As an inspector, if a horse is out on a large enclosure (acres it sounds like) containing potential forage and water is in clear evidence, then they have nothing by which to show that the owner is not providing the needed sustenance.

Does it suck? Yes it does. But, inspector comes out, see's whisps of bits of hay on the ground, sees water in a bucket.... well, the horse is being provided for. They can't just take someones word that it wasn't the owner that did the providing.

Sometimes it is better to let them suffer an extra day or two. Awful to say, but in the case of building a neglect case, really no way around it.

#11 Codi

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 05:53 PM

No food is one thing, but how long do you expect a horse to live without water?! The horse had been without water for a week already. The mare was stumbling around, hardly able to walk. Dont tell me i shouldn't have given her water! She'd be dead by now if i hadn't! If it takes a mare dying to get someone out there to look at her, its not even worth it!

#12 BelleoftheBall

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 07:06 PM

Good job, Codi! Please just keep bugging the pants off those rescue people and I would write everything down, take notes so you can give someone a written report even if it is the local newspaper. Let the authorities find the owner, don't trespass, but keep an eye on the situation.....the squeaky wheel gets the grease and for whatever reason....this horse's condition was brought to your attention by a higher power. Thank you for caring!

#13 Serah Rose

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 07:09 PM

horse rescue sucks a lot of the time...the legal routes are of little immediate help in many situations.

I just want to say thank you for giving the poor thing water and hay.

Have you tried pulling into the first closest house and asking about the horse? Perhaps they know who owns it, or perhaps they own it themselves?
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#14 Codi

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 09:06 PM

Ive thought of everything. There isnt a house for miles! there is this tiny town a looong ways down that same road. I got lost, wound up in that small town (im talkin SMALL! all the roads are dirt). thats how i found her. I was trying to get out of there. And every car that goes by, its always a little old couple or someone who looks like a tourist who got lost just like i did. I always wave, hoping someone might stop and talk to me, but they wave back like they have no idea whats going on.

#15 Serah Rose

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 10:19 PM

even if there isn't a place for miles...go to the first place within miles and ask. It can't really hurt.

Anecdote: My college friends and I were driving around chatting after classes one day. We were out in the boonies - only pastureland with sheep, mules, and a few horses in sight. As we were driving we saw a horse with his leg stuck in the fence. It was one of those mesh fences and it was wide enough to get a leg through. I had my leatherman on me, so I figured we'd just go up, clip the fence and free the horse then repair, no harm no foul. As we approached the horse he started panicking and so we retreated and drove down the road. We went about 5 miles til we came across a house. We pulled in and described the area/horse and the situation, and the gal knew exactly who the horse was, and who it belonged to, and promptly called the owner up.

Small town/middle of nowhere places know everyone and their business.
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#16 Wild Rose

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 07:02 AM

In that first picture, what is that thing along the left side of the picture? It almost looks like a part of a building, but you said the horse was just enclosed in a barb wire fence.

I say it's good you gave the horse food and water. I agree, the horse would not have survived without it. If it were me, and nothing was being done by the authorities, I would try contacting the neighbors, and I'd keep feeding the horse.

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#17 Milo

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 08:23 AM

As sucky as it is--the rescue was correct. It's the same around here: any food/water on the premises, there's nothing they can do.

Having said that, I would have done the same. The filly probably would have died if you hadn't stumbled across her. Document everything. Get a written letter from your friend, saying exactly how you found the horse, what you brought over in regards to water/feed. Pictures of everything, dates/times and content of every call you've made so far.

If the inspector or rescue are unable/unwilling to help, your best recourse is to try to find the owner of the land and offer to buy the horse. Another thing that sucks--sometimes buying them is the easiest and fastest way to save them.

Keep us posted please!
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#18 Apps4Life

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 08:43 AM

My only comment will be on identifying the horses "owner".

Take the location, nearest corner and then x feet/miles N/S/E/W of the corner, or even better a GPS coordinate and go to the county USDA extension, court house or library and look at the county plat map. That will be able to tell you who owns the property.
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#19 teampenninglady123

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 10:31 AM

feel like being clever?

call 911 and say there is a horse on the road.

when they come...and see it is not...tell them it jumped back over the fence but you are not sure where it got out at.

Then say the poor thing probably is getting out b/c it is desperate for food and water...and let the cop see why.

They will HAVE to call/locate owner b/c of the hazard on the highway the horse could be.

We have cows that do this all the time...and man, they hunt us down to let us know.

They have to do something then. They become obligated to make sure the owner secures the horse properly b/c if something happens after the cops showed up and left, and they did nothing to loacte owner...they will be liable.
I would also write a note and put it in a ziploc bag and attach it to your water bucket with water in it and say:

Dear county inspector or police: This water here is NOT from the owner or caregiver of this horse. I put it here as a concerned citizen b/c without this water from me... it will DIE! Please handle this horse and the owner as I cannot keep coming back here and shouldn't have to. Thanks!


Make sure if they ask you if it is your note...tell them no and tell them you were just coming down the road when you saw the horse.

I hate like heck to tell you to lie...but I would for the welfare of this horse.

Edited by teampenninglady123, 17 April 2012 - 10:42 AM.

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#20 DawnC

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 02:44 PM

I was just trying to point out that from a LEGAL perspective, you need to be very careful. There are all kinds of things that could be going on that only the owner can provide answers for.

I'll use myself as a recent example. A couple of months ago my mare went somewhat off her feed for a couple of days, just nibbling, kinda lethargic. Day 3, stopped nibbling, started showing classic mild colic symptoms. Vet out, tubed, medicated. Told to watch her and if not showing recovered appetite in 24 hours to call back. 24 hours later, I get the vet back out. They check her out, reflux style blockage, they want her in the clinic for IV and 24 hour monitoring.

She ended up at the clinic for the next 5 days. Did not ingest any food for the first four days, fluids via IV only. She was released back to me on day 6. She looked AWFUL. She had essentially not eaten or drank for 9 straight days other than what was tubed in. Seriously, she looked HORRIBLE, even though she was on the slow road to recovery.

Vet wanted her on a VERY specific, VERY limited diet while bringing her gut back up to speed. I put her in a dry lot so I would know EXACTLY what she was consuming when. If you had pulled up and given her 4 flakes of hay, you likely would have put her straight back at the vet clinic, and I would be trying to hunt you down to pay for the next 5 days of 24 hour ICU care. I'd have been extremely upset.

If you had called law enforcement and they contacted me, I would have happily provided them a copy of my vet bill, along with the instructions from my vet and the phone # to contact them and verify the horses condition.
Is it likely to be the case? No, probably not. But no one really knows until you go through the channels.

#21 teampenninglady123

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 04:40 PM

update?
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#22 Codi

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 08:30 PM

Ok, so i had been planning for the worst. If plan A (calling the horse rescue) didn't work, I was going to call the sherif and see if through him, I could either remove the horse legally or find out who the owners were and have him ask to surrender the horse (not sure how the system works). Plan C was calling the local police (I called 911 and they gave me the #). I was being very careful to not break the law in any way so no worries everyone!

BUT...!
The horse rescue called me this morning and said that the inspector went out there and saw the horse, and decided she was bad enough off to take her. So hes having to go through all this rigamarole to find out who they are. Once he contacted them, he was going to ask them to the surrender the horse or they were going to take them to court! So I sent her an email with my pictures of the horse I took on the day I found her just so if they needed to take them to court, they could build a case. I asked the woman if I could bring her water while all of this went through. She said hold off, but the mare had been 2 days without water!!! I decided to bring her water and let her drink all she wanted and take all of the evidence with me! But when I got there, there were truck and trailer tire tracks heading in, and no mare to be found! So someone came and got her. Not sure if it was the horse rescue, or the owners, or maybe someone sick of seeing her suffer just like me. But where ever she is, she's getting help. Im still expecting a call from the horse rescue probably tomorrow.

#23 Codi

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Posted 18 April 2012 - 08:32 PM

By them, I mean the owners lol

#24 BelleoftheBall

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 12:13 AM

Codi - You did your best for the animal and you should feel good about that. I hope the rescue took her and she is on her way to better treatment and a good life.

#25 Codi

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 07:41 AM

I got an email from the horse rescue that she had put in a few calls to the inspector. She should hear back from him today and call me. Ill keep you all posted :)

#26 BelleoftheBall

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Posted 19 April 2012 - 10:20 AM

Thanks Codi, I'd appreciate the followup!

#27 Codi

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 09:32 AM

So the horse rescue FINALLY got ahold ove the brand inspector! I guess the horse belonged to a person who keeps their horses in the plot of land next to the one i found her in, and she got out and into a place she shouldn't be. But they got her back on the right side of the fence and the brand inspector is going to follow up on her.

#28 Sakura18

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 07:15 AM

What I want to know is why didn't they notice their horse missing? Surely they go and check on them a few times a week atleast(if they have roundbales and a large water tank/pond). :confused0024:
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