I Hate these Wild Horses: Once a work of Fiction, now pure Fact

by R.T. Fitch, author of “Straight from the Horse’s Heart

(I wrote this piece as pure fiction in the beginning of December in anticipation of what “might” happen at Calico, and did.  Now, with the massacre going on at Tuscarora and the latest article by Steven Long proving that the BLM lies, decieves and covers up their crimes AND with Sue Cattoor admitting that her husband, with a record, acts as vet/judge/jury and God by shooting wild horses from a helicopter, well it’s time to bring this back.  Sadly, fact modeled itself after fiction – R.T.)

 

His four, small legs pounded and slipped through the snow, rocks and ice.  He was loosing her, he couldn’t keep up.  Through the blowing snow and the roaring sound from above she kept running and running as fast as she could.

With the distance between them beginning to grow he could feel the panic of separation building in his young chest.

His mother would dodge to the left then run to the right attempting to shake the pursuing horror from above.  He knew she was trying to lead the terror from the skies away from him but he wanted and needed to be with her; he had never been this afraid in his entire young life.

His nostrils flared and his lungs burned as he gulped down the frigid air while attempting to maintain his footing down the icy mountainside.

He did not know where the giant, thumping creature had come from but his mother knew enough to run and he followed her as the beast from the clouds roared and screamed over their heads.

His vision was obscured with the whirling white snow beating him in the face and stinging his eyes.  He could no longer hear his mother over the screeching wings above him.

The noise increased, the snow swirled quicker and in his state of visual deprivation and sensory overload he just stopped; he locked up his knees and skidded to a clumsy halt on the slick, slopping ground.

As quickly as it had come, the dark, sinister monster in the sky sped away while the snow stopped it’s frantic dance and gently settled back onto the, now, quiet ground.

He shook his head, not just in an effort to clear his mind but also to shake the settled snow from his face and mane.

Where was his mother?

As the snow settled he could now see down the slope and realized that he had stopped just short of a steep drop off; yet his proud, dark mother was nowhere to be seen.

With his nose to the ground, ears alert and eyes peering forward he slowly followed her scent the few feet to the edge of the cliff.  The depth of the drop off startled him so he scooted backwards out of fear but not before he caught a glimpse of a familiar figure far below.

He took in a breath of winter air and edged forward until he could just peek over the edge and there, far below him, lay the crumpled, still form of what had once been his mother.

He screamed, he slipped, he scurried back as the cold darkness of fear, dread and loss overtook him.

His mother was gone.

Cattoor Chopper - by Terry Fitch

“Condor to Eagle’s Nest, Condor to Eagle’s Nest, come in Eagle’s Nest”, barked the helicopter pilot as he headed his chopper on a southerly heading only about 200 ft off the valley floor.

“Go ahead Condor this is Eagle’s Nest” came crackling back over his headphones.

“Looks like I lost another one; oh rats”, laughed the pilot.

“Are you doing that on purpose?’ asked the voice in the headphones, “That’s the seventh one today”

“Not really, but if you are keeping score you may as well call it eight as she had a foal and he ain’t gonna be able to make the night without his mama, do I get extra points for that?”

“Naw, but we still have a lot of work to do and a bunch more of those bastards to roundup so you better get back after it.”

“It is what it is when you do this crap in the winter.  Any of those tree hugging protesters over there today?”

“Nope, guess it is too cold or they just plain gave up.  They might have finally realized that they aren’t going to win, that we are going to take them all.”

“Bunch of candy-assed pussies, not worth the powder to blow them from here to hell.”

“Roger that, but this is a no- name herd that won’t draw much publicity, not like there is some TV show made about them or anything so they probably just went back and crawled into their books and their magical fairyland.”

“Let em go, good place for um.”

“Say, you know you are about working yourself out of a job up there, don’t you?”

“How’s that?”

“We’ve almost got all these useless wild horses cleared off the land so what are you planning to do next?”

“Maybe I will learn how to herd the cattle that you plan to place out here.”

The voice in the pilot’s headphones laughed, “Yea, in your dreams.”

“Probably so, ya gotta love your job to be able to survive.”

“It’s my turn to ask ‘How’s that’?”

“Because I love my job, maybe too much, cause I hate these wild horses”

“Roger that, me too.  So earn your dammed, inflated day rate and go get us some of those bastard wild horses.”

“Will do, but you’re buying the beer tonight.”

“Affirmative Condor, now get to work.”

“Condor out and gunning for more!”

With that the helicopter pilot twisted the collective and pulled his stick hard to the right.  The chopper smartly curved towards the mountains to the west and in only a matter of moments the pilot could make out several dark and tan shapes against the snow on the lower slopes.

Like a World War I bi-plane the helicopter went into a steep dive, aiming directly at the innocent, wild horses below.  As the aircraft fell upon the startled horses the pilot imagined that he had gun sights on his windscreen and keyed his transmission button like it was a machine gun trigger.  “Take that, and that you bloody bastards, you’re all dead anyway”, he laughed as he pulled back his stick to make another pass at the terrified animals below.  He wanted to drive them down the slope and to the east and then run them down the valley to the trap in the south.

He came at them down the slope from above as the band stallion deftly turned to the north with his herd following close behind.  The pilot lowered his aircraft to just inches over the panicked horses and he would have heard them screaming over the beating of his own blades if he were not growling through clenched teeth, “I hate these wild horses!!!”

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WHO’S ON FIRST?

Guest Editorial by Vicki Tobin, Vice President of The Equine Welfare Alliance

EWA Exec Speaks out on Anti-Horse Activists

The slaughter proponent’s arguments bring to mind the old Abbott and Costello routine because you never really know what they are saying. They talk back and forth to each other with neither, understanding the other or making sense.

Each new year brings new arguments and scare tactics from our opponents. When each talking point is disproved, they move on to the next. Every once in a while, they throw a curve ball and resurrect an old argument thinking it just might stick this time around.

We, on the other hand, have been consistent in our message. Humanely euthanize your horse. End your horse’s life by humane euthanasia as we do with all non-food animals in the United States. It is the preferred method by all major veterinarian associations. Any competent veterinarian will tell you that. Veterinarians don’t carry captive bolts in their medical bags or advise their clients to send their horses to slaughter. Veterinarians for Equine Welfare has an excellent updated white paper on this subject.

Dr. Lester Friedlander, DVM & former Chief USDA Inspector stated, “The captive bolt is not a proper instrument for the slaughter of equids, these animals regain consciousness 30 seconds after being struck, they are fully aware they are being vivisected.”

When the slaughter debate started heating up in the late 2000s, the argument of choice was; what are we going to do with old, lame, sick horses? Jeez, any responsible horse owner knows the answer to that. Pick up the phone and call the vet.

Next was the argument that horses are livestock. While many categorize horses as livestock, that’s not the issue. The issue is that of a food animal vs. a non-food animal. US horses are not raised as food animals but for other purposes. Mounted police are not riding food animals. Therapy horses are not food animals. Race horses are not food animals. The country does not use food animals in military and presidential funerals. Have you ever seen a riderless cow? Dressage, cutting and reining horses are not food animals. Livestock (food animals) do not perform any of the functions that horses perform in our society.

US horses must have maintenance medications that are prohibited in food animals to keep them at peak performance and healthy. There is no tracking of horses as there is with livestock. Unlike horses, you can trace livestock back to the original farm. It is obvious by the opposition to NAIS last year that owners don’t want horses tracked.

This brings me to the “abandoned” horses. If you can’t find the owners to charge them for the crime they have committed, how are you going to certify the horses are free of prohibited substances? A horse that has received a prohibited substance can never enter the food chain. There is no withdrawal period. Those are the EU rules and the FDA rules.

We have been warning of the drug issue for years. We were made the brunt of many a joke and constantly laughed at. We were so ridiculously funny, the EU took notice. It is important to note that all current anti-horse propaganda never addresses the drug issue.

There have been many scare tactics such as the AQHA release in 2008 warning owners that if the federal legislation passes they won’t be able to transport their horse across the street. Senator Landrieu promptly responded with a release stating the intent of the law and we never again saw that argument.

One of the most often used arguments is property rights. Nobody can tell slaughter proponents what they can or cannot do with their property. This is one of the more laughable arguments since there are many laws on the books telling property owners exactly how to dispose of property such as appliances, batteries, toxic substances, cars, etc. There are even laws in certain areas on horse disposal. Owning property does not give the owner the right to abuse the property, especially when the “property” is a living, sentient being.

Now we are hearing how inhumane slaughter is in Mexico and Canada. Slaughter proponents conveniently forget that they never uttered a peep when thousands of horses were sent over the borders when the US plants were open. Why was it okay then but not now? They never mention the inhumane slaughter that took place in the US and dismiss government FOIAs. The truth is that no matter where horses are slaughtered it will never be humane.

They complain of the long distances in travel now but didn’t have any concerns when horses were being trucked across the US to slaughter plants and also to plants in Mexico, Canada and Japan. All documented humane violations in shipping have taken place within US borders and yet, they oppose the slightest change to improve conditions such as a ban on double deckers. It is quite obvious; they have no concern for horse welfare, only lining their pockets. There were years and years of investigations and FOIAs of the domestic plants and never was an attempt made to correct anything.

The latest comments we are seeing is that they will start raising horses for slaughter. I’m not sure what type of business model will survive paying thousands on feed for pasture ornaments to bring in revenue of $300-$600 per horse from a kill buyer.

This is yet another shining example of their refusal to address the issue of excess horses. Instead of addressing the mess they have created, they’re going to start a new population of horses. Slaughter at all costs! One only needs to follow the rules of engagement to be a diehard anti-horse person.

Rule #1: Never admit responsibility for producing the excess horses going to slaughter.

Rule #2: Call horses “unwanted” so you can blame the horse. Call slaughter harvesting or processing so that it is more palatable.

Rule #3: Never take responsibility for horses you choose to buy or breed and transfer all blame to the “radical vegan tree huggers” that oppose slaughter.

Rule #4: Blame the rescues.

Rule #5: Blame the legislators.

Rule #6: Exploit Native Americans for the few that have chosen to go against their teachings and spiritual beliefs that revere and respect the horse.

Rule #7: Blame anyone that dares to speak up publicly for the horses, make sure you publish a list of these terrible people and call for a boycott. Even include celebrities that have raised millions of dollars for farmers. All people that want horses treated humanely must be exposed. Wait a minute. Doesn’t that sound like the organization that they so vehemently oppose? They blast them but when they do the same, it’s okay.

Rule #8: Be sure to present all propaganda to legislators with nothing to back the statements but emphasize it as fact.

Rule #9: Create bogus polls and surveys that slant questions and circulate only to those sharing your view. Then, present the results to Congress as the view of horse owners across the country.

Rule #10: State that all rescues are full and become combative when asked for the data to back the claims.

Rule #11: Ignore that slaughter is still very much available and blame all horse woes on the closure of the plants. To fully utilize this rule, under no circumstance, mention or blame the economy. The impact of the economy does not play a role in the horse industry. That is the only industry in America that would not have been impacted by the economy if the slaughter plants had remained opened.

Rule #12: Ignore the horrific investigations and FOIAs and always state that slaughter is a good thing. After all, it allows irresponsible breeders to breed and dump so they can breed more. It allows owners that are abusing and neglecting their horses to hide their crimes by having the horse slaughtered. Then, chuckle and whisper under your breath, America’s Dirty Little Secret.

Rule #13: Never discuss present society and culture. Always refer to 70 or more years ago when some people were forced to eat horse meat but make it sound like present day and thus, you may be able to create a false market in the US.

Rule #14: Always state, with emotion, that slaughter opponents are trying to change other country’s cultures. With even more emotion, state that the horse meat is feeding the hungry in foreign countries even though the hungry cannot afford the gourmet priced horse meat.

Rule#15: Never mention the largest case of neglect in the US occurred in 2005 when all three plants were operating.

Rule #16: Ignore all studies and data on abuse and neglect.

Rule #17: Be sure to always interject the slippery slope. It is your greatest weapon to scare farmers and ranchers into believing that ending the slaughter of a non-food animal will bring down livestock slaughter.

Rule #18: Never mention that slaughter is a predatory, demand driven business and especially don’t mention that US plants imported horses to fill the demand when demand increased.  In years when the demand was down and fewer horses were slaughtered, just state that there were fewer “unwanted” horses in those years. Don’t ever admit that slaughter houses only slaughter the number of horses needed to fill the demand. Let everyone think they are performing a service to rid the US of “unwanted” horses.

Rule #19: Lobby against any legislation for animal welfare, even if it’s something you feel you should support. At all costs, even good legislation from any animal “rights” organization for the humane treatment of any animal must be prevented.

and the two most important rules…

Rule #20: Never directly answer a question, especially when facts are requested. Doubletalk and then change the subject. It is imperative this rule be invoked when asked to discuss the drug issue and how unsafe US horses are for human consumption.

Rule #21: Learn the art of spinning. Always accuse the pro-horse advocates of being emotional, attack their credibility and spin the facts. This is especially important when indisputable facts are provided. When footage or photos are provided, be sure to state with authority they are fake or have been altered. Always state that because they are against slaughter that they are responsible for the horses suffering.

Slaughter proponents don’t stop at domestic horses. They must target all horses, including our wild horses. Perhaps they haven’t read the EU regulations that state that the only wild equidae meat that will be accepted is zebra meat – or did they?

Rule #1: Ignore mitochondrial DNA studies and start calling all wild horses and burros feral so they can be shipped to slaughter.

Rule #2: Be sure to send and publish propaganda on how the wild horses and burros are overpopulated and ruining the ranges.

Rule #3: Never, never mention the millions of privately owned livestock that have turned our public lands into a giant feedlot.

Rule #4: Never mention the hundreds of millions of dollars the taxpayers shell out for the private livestock grazing on public lands.

Rule #5: Dismiss and never mention the GAO studies that prove the livestock, not the horses, are ruining the ranges.

Rule #6: Never mention the pictures of the horses that died of thirst laying alongside the fences that cattle ranchers erected to block the wild horses from using the water sources.

Rule #7: Ignore all footage and photos of the healthy, thriving horses being removed from public lands. At all times, state the horses are starving and removing them is for their own good.

Rule #8: Provide your own wild horse and burro population counts. Make up a staggering number and state with authority and conviction the data source is Google Earth and begin circulating and publishing the number as fact in all communications.

The best argument, by far, is that because of the “ban” on horse slaughter, horses are being starved, neglected and abandoned. This is quite amusing since there is nothing stopping anyone from sending their horse to slaughter. 2008 saw the second highest slaughter count since 1995. Shouldn’t they wait until slaughter isn’t available to make such a statement? In one swooping statement, they disprove their own argument and prove our point that slaughter does not prevent suffering.

Why are owners allowing their horses to suffer instead of sending them to the killers? Did it ever occur to the slaughter proponents that owners are holding on to their horses because they fear the horse may end up on a slaughter truck if they sell or donate the horse?

The bottom line is that slaughter proponents don’t have a platform. They have no facts or data to back their statements and as a consequence, they continually have to invent new arguments and scare tactics.

It is time to call the ball game. Call your legislators to stop this insanity and ask that they pass the legislation to protect our horses. Pick up the phone and do it now.

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Say NO to Federal Funding for Wild Horse Salazoos

Urgent Press Release from The Equine Welfare Alliance and Animal Law Coalition

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar Wants to Move our Wild Horses to Mid-Western Death Camps

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, father of the

CHICAGO, (EWA) – The funding testimony for the planned sanctuaries dubbed by wild horse supporters as “Salazoos” outlined last October by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, will be heard by the Senate Appropriations Committee on Energy and Natural resources on March 3, at 10am.

The outcome of the testimony will decide if our wild horses belong on their western public lands or in “zoos” in the East and Midwest and whether the BLM will commit millions upon millions of future dollars to warehouse wild horses and burros that would otherwise live without cost to the taxpayers in their natural habitat where they have lived for centuries.

The requested funding would increase the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) budget by $42M to purchase one of the seven planned “Salazoos.” The Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) and its over 100 member organizations, Animal Law Coalition, The Cloud Foundation and numerous Mustang advocate and welfare organizations are vehemently opposed to increased funding for the BLM for this incredible financial sinkhole.

America already has a management program in place for our wild equines. It’s called the 1971 Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act. It was inspired by a heroic Nevada woman, Velma Johnston, who as “Wild Horse Annie” gave these horses a sanctuary BLM has been trying to destroy ever since it was passed.

A management program for wild horses and burros on public land has yet to be proposed by the BLM or DOI that is compatible with current law. Their answer is to remove wild horses from the land, permit grazing by millions of cattle at below market rates and move our horses to a zoo like setting far from their home. In fact, the BLM was given appropriations to care for the wild horses in holding pens but has appeared to use the funding to round-up more horses. When citizens complained, they were denied access as armed guards prevented them from even viewing horses in captivity.

With no viable management plan in place, it is a disgrace and waste of critical tax payer dollars to increase funding to yet another mismanaged program. The 1971 law calls for wild horses and burros to be managed on their public lands – not in holding pens and not in zoos.

The BLM spent approximately $2M gathering a mere 2,000 animals at its Calico wildlife management area, a cost of $1,000 per horse. Once in holding, the animals will each cost the government approximately $500 per year to warehouse. Worse, the government charges ranchers only about 20 cents of every dollar that program costs taxpayers. “The Salazoo plan is yet another raid on the public funds by special interests”, says EWA’s John Holland.

BLM has spent more than $2 million in 2009 on a firm that stampedes wild horses with a roaring helicopter. At the Calico Nevada round-up, more than 98 have died as a result, including unborn foals and two babies who lost their hooves after a multi-mile run of terror.

The wild horses and burros represent a mere .05% of animals grazing on public lands. When the 1971 law was passed, wild horses were present on 54 million acres. Since then, over 200,000 horses have been removed along with 22 million acres of public land. Many herds have been zeroed out leaving public land available to return wild horses to their land. Congress should replace the lost acres with good grazing land for the animals BLM wants to place in its Salazoos.

The livestock grazing on public lands alone outnumber the wild horses and burros by over 200 to 1 and are subsidized by taxpayers to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Neither the BLM nor DOI has yet to explain how millions of privately owned livestock are sustainable or how neither agency can find room on the 262 million acres of public land it manages for less than 50,000 wild horses and burros. Neither has explained why the wild horses and burros are being blamed and removed for range degradation when the government GAO studies reflect the livestock are ruining the ranges.

The EWA and ALC call on Congress to deny additional funding and specifically defund wild horse and burro round-ups until the DOI and BLM can provide independent current range population counts, current range assessments and a viable management plan that upholds the 1971 law.

Both Sen. Mary Landrieu and Sen. Barbara Boxer have posed serious questions to the BLM on its management practices. Those questions should be answered immediately with facts, not spin.

Additional details on defunding the BLM for “Salazoos” can be found at Animal Law Coalition, article number 1188.

The Equine Welfare Alliance is a dues free, umbrella organization with over 100 member organizations. The organization focuses its efforts on the welfare of all equines and the preservation of wild equids.


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Tomorrow Convicted Horse Murderer Jason Meduna is Sentenced

Commentary by  R.T. Fitch

Meduna is Guilty but what about his Followers?

One of over 70 Wild Horses found dead on Meduna's Ranch

From across the bridge and through the fog of death the screams and cries of the starved horses were heard; heard loud and clear. Jason  Meduna was found guilty.  A horse murder was brought to justice.  Strike one up for the horses, or 145 up as that is the number of felony animal cruelty counts that Meduna was found guilty of, 145 out of 149, the horses were clearly heard.

A horse murderer was exposed for what he really is; a twisted excuse of a human soul who will be sentenced tomorrow and hopefully put away for a very long time.  The horses were heard yet a few murderers still slipped away.  Jason had friends, Jason had supporters who stood there and argued that he was doing the right thing while the piles of bodies laid around them; they had succumbed to the legend that raged on in Jason’s own mind, the mind of a manipulator and a fraud.

Meduna may have finally gotten caught, but many around him escaped into the dark and laid low during the trial so as not to focus the bright light of justice upon themselves.  They were the ones that cried out against the dying horses being taken from 3-Strikes in an effort to save them.  They were the voices that lied along with Jason about the dead horses being poisoned.  They changed tactics when the poison story fell apart and started to scream about a strange and exotic disease that the horses had.  They shook their fists at HSUS, Front Range, Habitat for Horses and shocked owners for their rehabilitation and re-homing efforts saying that the exotic equine disease would be spread across the U.S. and wipe out all equines in the country.  They even managed to get a reporter or two to listen.

Where are those horse killing supporters now?

Tomorrow the Judge sentences the scheming horse murderer and hopefully he will be put away for life, never again to knowingly harm and kill a horse.

But what about those that got away, the wife, the group that supported him, the BLM for failure to inspect, where are they in this legal mess of death and starvation?

Many questions, no real answers and no further convictions but one thing is for certain; tomorrow Jason Meduna will feel the full brunt of the Force of the Horse® and it won’t be painless.  I hope that it stings for a lifetime and the screams never leave his ears.

May the souls across the bridge now have peace and know that their sacrifice has put a horse murderer away, forever, where he can never harm another equine, again.

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Canadian Food Inspection Agency may have dealt death blow to Horse Slaughter in North America

by R.T. Fitch

New requirements give hope for U.S. Horses

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has issued new requirements for horse meat destined for human consumption.

“Effective July 31, 2010, it will be mandatory for all Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) inspected facilities in Canada engaged in the slaughter of equine for edible purposes to have complete records for all animals (domestic and imported) presented for slaughter. These records will include unique identification for each animal, a record of illness and a record of medical treatments administered to the animal for the six-month period preceding slaughter. The template entitled “Equine Information Document” (EID) shall be used by equine owners for this purpose.

A completed EID contains a standardized description of the animal or unique lot identification, as well as a comprehensive record of the equine’s medical treatment for at least the preceding six months. The various options for identification, including visual and written descriptions, are listed in the document. The document is intended to accompany the equine, at the time of ownership transfer, to the buyer of the animal. The EID requires a signed declaration by the owner of the equine as to the accuracy of the information recorded in the EID.”

There are several “show stopper” meds that are strictly forbidden but the most common is an anti-inflammatory called Phenylbutazone, or Bute which is used extensively in the U.S. for equine aches and pains.  Horses who have ever been given Bute cannot be sold to slaughter under the new requirements.

Equine advocates around the world are applauding the new move that now brings the Canadian horse slaughter industry in line with the requirements of the EU where most horse meat is sold to high end dealers.  Over 100,000 U.S. horses a year cross the U.S. and Candadian border to become dinner for weatlhy Europeons.  It is hoped that this new requiremnt will herald the beginning of the end of importation of U.S. horses, both domestic and wild, to Canada for the sole purpose of being slaughtered for human consumption.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has listed the requirements, in detail, upon their website.

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I love you so…

written by R.T. Fitch, author of  Straight from the Horse’s Heart

(Today I was browsing through the message board of Habitat for Horses where founder, Jerry Finch, often leaves a literary morsel or two for sharing and introspection.  I came upon this small piece and was prepared to enter it here when I realized that it was actually something that I had written, years ago, and my good friend, Jerry, thought enough of it and me to save it and then share it with the membership.  I was touched to tears as I had not only lost it but had forgotten about it yet my brother in spirit brought it back as if it were a precious gift…and I thank him from the bottom of my heart – R.T.)

‘She has tears streaming from her eyes. Her mouth is twisted into a half frown.
I have never seen this sort of expression on her before. She always smiles when she is near me, the corners of her mouth turned upwards. This new expression brings me pain as I can feel her hurting and I do not want that to be so.

She has been my friend and provider, I do not want her to be unhappy. I can not understand why she is unhappy now. This should be a happy time, yet she is so sad. She should be glad for me, glad that the pain is slipping away. She should be excited that I can hear the herd calling me from across the bridge.

My soul is feeling young again and I am so anxious to move on. She should know these things…her heart should be happy for me. I love her so.’

The old gelding lay in the stall, his head resting on her lap while she gently
stroked the side of his face and gazed into his big brown eye.

‘I love you so for all you have done and for being with me now, I love you more than life itself.’

He stared up at her.

‘Thank you, please…thank you for who you are and what you do. You saved me and cared for me when others had turned their backs to me. You fed me when I was starving and comforted me through many illnesses. You are my savior.

I hear my brothers calling me, they are excited that I am coming, but understand that in their calls they are saying thank you to you, also. I have to go and run, run like the wind, run free as I once did many years ago.

Be happy for me.

I am free and you let me go.

It is time.

I love you.

I thank you.

I will always live in your heart.

I will be waiting for you.

I am running…..’

She continued to sooth him and stroke the smooth dark fur on his cheek for quite some time after his breathing had stopped.

She slowly rocked to the gentle rhythm of her sobs.

The others had walked away to give her this private moment.

She leaned forward, closed his eye, gently kissed his cheek and whispered, “I
love you too”.

She carefully slid out from underneath his massive head and gently placed it on the shavings.

She stood for a moment and allowed her eyes to flow over the now quiet body that lay at peace in the stall.

The tears returned, she nodded and spun on one heel to walk away….and from far away she heard a distant whinnying, an echoed call of joy and the thunder of running hooves vibrated within her soul.

She smiled and was at peace, too.
_________________
R.T. Fitch
“May the Horse be with you!”

Habitat for Horses, Inc.
PO Box 213
Hitchcock, TX 77563
409-935-0277

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