1999 chestnut Arab cross mare
Registered Name: none
Type of Rescue: Animal Control Surrender
Intake Date: 11/21/19
Adoption Date: 3/21/21
Length of Time with SAFE: 2 years, 4 months
ADOPTED!! by Emily
Beauty was surrendered to Animal Control because her owner failed to care for her. She went without proper vet and dental care for a period of time, and was malnourished and underweight when she was surrendered. Today, Beauty is spunky, happy, and healthy! After working with Beauty, it has become clear that she has not always had the best experiences with people. She can be quite defensive when she feels stuck or is unsure of what is being asked of her. With help from the horsemanship volunteers, Beauty gained more confidence and found comfort in people, where she couldn’t find it before. We tested Beauty under saddle and we were pleasantly surprised how great she did. This wonderful mare became part of the riding program and we were able to offer her as a light riding horse. She now lives with a wonderful family and their horse, Rocky.
Our Beauty has been adopted! When she arrived at SAFE in late 2019, under the gloom of November skies, it was immediately clear that Beauty had also seen brighter days. Her chestnut coat was rough and patchy from malnourishment, and her teeth were in poor condition, so much so that it was decided she would have to be fed an all-grain diet to reduce her risk of choking. However, it quickly became apparent that she didn’t mind her special feeding circumstances, as she would usher in each mealtime with a chorus of nickers. Another caveat — grass was OK, so who needs hay, anyway?
If we could speak horse, we could ask Beauty about her past directly. Perhaps she would tell us she was a child’s 4H horse, or that her favorite activity was walking the trails, taking in the sounds, smells, and sights. But alas, we can only guess at these things, and with 20+ years under her cinch, it was clear she had been through a lot. With the help of some two-legged friends, Beauty was given the support she needed to work through some of the trouble from her past, and learn a few new tricks along the way. Her progress was so immense that she was even restarted as a light riding horse!
Beauty’s adopter came to SAFE looking for a good fit, and found one in this special mare. A pleasure to trailer-load from day one, Beauty was chauffeured to her new home by her good friend Jane, where she made quick work of settling in as the newest member of the family. Quite the social butterfly, Beauty was especially delighted to meet her new neighbor, the handsome gelding Rocky.
Since she arrived home in March, Beauty has been filling her days (and her belly!) by grazing alongside her buddies, enjoying a bit of light riding, and, above all else, being loved and doted on. She is gentle with the littlest members of her family, and, curious and friendly as ever, does not hesitate to investigate what her human companions are doing when they’re near. The family said they feel fortunate to have found such a kind old lady. All in all, a beautiful life for such a beauty!
This is Beauty’s second time riding at SAFE outside of the round pen. She is coming down off a feel nicely, learning to soften through one rein stops and building trust with her rider. She can be fairly “gate sour” and she would prefer to be ridden alongside another horse, but she’s learning that emotional support can also come from humans. This older mare has come a long way since arriving at SAFE. She loves other horses and has become increasingly connected to humans. Beauty is available now as a light walk/trot riding horse.
Jane and Kaya have been putting a lot of time into getting Beauty ready to be ridden. She’s accepted a saddle with ease, but she’s very reluctant to take a bit into her mouth. So today Kaya got on and rode her in a halter. As you can see, Beauty was just fine about being ridden, which opens up a lot of opportunity for this mare to find a home where she can be lightly ridden. Hopefully, before too long Jane will have her out on the trail!
Beauty’s been enjoying the past year, settling into her life at SAFE. Her friend Jane has helped her become so much happier and relaxed around people. It is clear that Beauty has a riding history and she’s sound, so we thought we would see if she could be a riding horse again!
We tested out all of the rope work and saddle prep that we would do for a totally green horse and Beauty was completely unfazed by all of it. She handled being saddled really well and didn’t really get tight or bothered about it at all. She took everything in stride and even seemed to be saying, “yeah, what else you got?”
Beauty needs some more work relaxing when turned out loose in the round pen and also needs help with bending down to a one rein stop. We want her to relax her head and neck down in a long, even trot, and to have easier transitions. We’re also looking for her to bend more evenly and balanced. Right now, she stays pretty stiff until she crooks her neck around, so we need to help her increase her flexibility and understanding. We’re confident that we will be able to help Beauty with these things through more groundwork and hopefully we’ll have a new riding horse soon!
Thanks to The Limelight Pet Project for featuring Beauty!
The Limelight Pet Project is a campaign local to Washington that shines a light on harder-to-adopt pets and the people who help them. We were excited to see Beauty this month on Q13 FOX.
Here’s the article and segment on Q13 FOX:
And a full version of Terry telling Beauty’s story:
Limelight took some lovely photos of Beauty when they were out, too:
Clinic report from Jane M:
I had the distinct pleasure of working with Beauty, a 20+ year old Arabian mare, in the Joel Connor Clinic this past week. I spent five days in a row doing groundwork for an hour under Joel’s supervision. It’s impossible to know what abuse this sweet mare endured before she came to SAFE, but her extreme reaction (head thrown up, ears pinned, eyes wild, teeth often bared) whenever she’s asked to back up may be evidence of violent treatment in her past. By the end of the fifth day, Beauty managed to w/t/c both directions with a relatively pleasant expression. She was able to back a few steps with my hand at her chin on the halter and maintain a pleasant expression. Whenever we finished a movement, I could rub her forehead and poll and her head would drop against my chest. She clearly has a very sweet side. I am optimistic that eventually Beauty will back up with a lovely, unconcerned expression. I have time. Thank you, SAFE, for the opportunity to get acquainted with this lovely mare.
Beauty is doing great at SAFE. She has completed the intake process and has settled into the routine of the barn. Her dull starvation coat is shedding away and soon she will be shining like a copper penny. She is very gentle, likes attention and is a kind mare. She LOVES meal time and tells us with her sweet little nickers how much she wants her senior feed. Beauty needs to be on a all-grain diet due to the condition of her teeth but she can still can graze on grass. She loves other horses and will make a great companion. We hope she can find a loving home to give her the retirement she deserves. This “granny” is ready to be adopted!
SAFE volunteer rider Julie W had this to share about her work with Beauty:
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Beauty on groundwork and leading twice this last week and I’ve endearingly begun referring to her as Grandma. My first impression is that she may jig to keep up with her faster walking companions and she is about as stiff as a 2x4 with no idea how to move her body in a more comfortable and relaxed way! But this little old lady has a ton of life, seems gentle, and strikes me as a quick learner. She started out a bit high and “lookie” while on the lead, a little clueless about my space, and wanting to jig some, but quickly leveled out and started seeking more of my feel as things started to click. She was absolutely unphased by my flag, a rope around her front feet, or a lead tossed over her back.
“For our second session, I had my mare Sophie (who I adopted from SAFE back in 2017) with me and after a short refresher with Grandma, err.. I mean Beauty, I climbed on Sophie and started working Beauty from horseback. This was another non-issue for Beauty and a great learning experience for Sophie, who has never ponied a horse before. We worked on having Beauty following more of a feel. I used Sophie’s body to help Beauty step through and reach better with her front end while changing direction. There was a huge change here for Beauty. She did scoot past me once when leading back to the turnout and so I think the next goal would be to work more on changing eyes and with things coming out of her blind spot. I’m also not sure, at her age, if she might not have some vision loss and if that could logically explain her rare and brief moments of surprise — something to look into more if it hasn’t been already. I’m looking forward to more transformation from this mare, as she continues to gain weight and gets a bit more of an education.”
We’ve now known Beauty for a little over a week. She’s still on our standard intake quarantine for another week so we haven’t been interacting with her too much, but she’s proving to be a sweet mare with a desire to connect with people and other horses.
Beauty came to us a little underweight, and she has some dental issues. She had her teeth floated prior to arrival, and the veterinarian that performed the dental found multiple loose teeth, two of which had to be extracted. It was recommended at that time that she be on a mash-only diet to reduce her risk of choking on hay. She is currently on a diet of strictly equine senior, because she has told us that she prefers not to eat any other type of pelleted feed. She also told us that she prefers her meals with very little water and refuses to eat them if they’re soupy. She’s definitely a girl who knows what she likes.
Beauty’s haircoat is rough and her history of malnourishment is evident. She has hair loss on her face where she has begun to shed that rough coat, and new, healthy hair is growing back in its place. It won’t be too long before Beauty lives up to her name and is a stunning chestnut mare. We haven’t thoroughly evaluated her for soundness yet, but she trots comfortably around her paddock and doesn’t seem to have any glaring issues.
It will probably be another month or two before Beauty gets up to her ideal weight and that rough fur is fully replaced by a healthy winter coat. But she’s already come a long way from where she was when she was taken in by animal control. We think she’ll make a Beauty-ful transformation!