All the Sheriff’s Horses

Or rather, two horses and three donkeys. Kirsten, Dawn and I took a short field trip down the road today to visit the equines currently at the sheriff’s station.

The sheriff’s station is an uncertain place to be if you’re a horse. Most horses that end up at the sheriff’s are strays that won’t be claimed. Lost horses found wandering around the county. Although lost implies someone is looking. And if someone is looking, they must not be looking very hard. The horses are held for about 2 weeks and then offered at auction. Most of the time, no one claims them during the holding period. And many times, no one shows up to bid on auction day. This is how the rescue ended up with Sheriff the sweet donkey, as well as Paden, our flashy paint.

The rescue doesn’t really have room for more horses at this point. However, we visited with the horses and also took some photos. We will network to try and find them good homes.

All five of these were pretty skeptical about us. The three donkeys, an intact white Jack, a cute yearling with a blaze, and a brown Jenny, huddled together in the back of their pen. The chestnut filly was covered with old scrapes and scratches. She stood in the middle of her pen and kept looking curiously at us, but wouldn’t come near us.

The dappled palomino stud was the friendliest. He acted really friendly and was happy to take treats, but was a bit unsure about being petted. He even let me attempt to look at his teeth–although then he squirmed a bit, so I couldn’t get a decent look. He’s not young, but he’s not old. He already had his public sale date and no one showed up to bid. But, it’s December and hay prices are going up. No one wants another mouth to feed.

He and the filly both seemed like they wanted to interact, but that they weren’t too sure. But could really use some TLC, the filly even more so than the palomino. However, both could probably be great horses if someone invested a bit of time and energy into them.

They both reminded me of many of the two dozen Iowa horses from last fall. Not crazy, wild horses, just uncertain and unsure about how to interact with people. And the Iowa horses blossomed under good feeding and gentle, consistent handling. Both of these two, the palomino and the chestnut filly have long toes–they could definitely benefit from some farrier work. But long toes are in someways good–they imply that the horse’s uncertainty could largely be from lack of handling, rather than from bad handling or abuse.

So, we’ll see if we can’t help the sheriff find homes for the five of them. And in the meantime, if you know of horse people around Texas, please help spread the word about these five to increase the chances of them finding great homes.

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