2003 paint Pony gelding
Registered Name: none
Type of Rescue: Owner Surrender
Intake Date: 10/25/20
Adoption Date: 6/14/21
Length of Time with SAFE: 9 months
ADOPTED!! by Jane, Henry, Anne and Mara
Billy had an interesting and challenging life when he arrived at SAFE. We’re told he was used as a bucking horse for kids, and the numbers branded on his croup indicate this is likely true. He was purchased from an auction earlier this year, and then taken in by another family two months ago. They were not been able to catch him on their four acre goat farm. Unfortunately, Billy and the goats did not do well together and his owner didn’t have the experience to help him.
Billy is a very brave boy but he clearly was mistreated in the past. He was friendly and fairly easy catch in a small area, but once turned out into a paddock, it took our most experienced volunteer riders to catch him. Billy’s right eye has a blind spot, but it’s not painful and he seems to have enough vision to manage well. After working with our horsemanship team, including his time in foster, Billy learned to be more trusting and that the halter didn’t mean something bad was going to happen. Billy now lives with a loving family spanning 3 generations and a girlfriend, Vinnie, a Warmblood trail horse.
Billy’s family sent a few photos from the past year. Marin had this to say about our Billy:
“Billy is doing great! He somehow gets sweeter and more curious every day. I can now give him kisses on his face, braid his forelock, touch his ears freely and without flinches (from the front), and give him hugs. We’re still working on not wearing the halter 24/7, but he can have off days where it’s really hard to catch him after you take it off, so we’re leaving it on just in case (minus when practicing taking it on and off with him caught as much as possible).
Next big goals after his halter are practicing getting a blanket on just in case we need it in the future and meeting strangers with less fear. Anyone from SAFE is welcome to stop by and say hi to Billy anytime!”
Billy is adopted! He has found a loving family in Bridle Trails with Jane and Harry, their daughter Anne and granddaughter, Marin. He even has a girlfriend, Vinnie, a Warmblood trail horse.
Billy had a rough past life. We believe he was used as a bucking horse for kids, which had to have been somewhat traumatic. When he came to SAFE, he was nervous around people and extremely scared of the lead rope. To him, ropes most likely meant pain or that something bad was going to happen. Two months before we picked up Billy, he had ended up at an auction. The couple who bought him were unable to catch him on their 4‑acre farm and realized they didn’t have the experience they needed to help him. Once at SAFE, Billy was always easy to catch in his stall, he just seemed shy. But once turned out into a paddock, it took our most skilled handlers to catch him. Through our training program and giving Billy all the time he needed, he learned that being haltered wasn’t going to mean fear and hurt anymore.
Even though Billy was only at SAFE for 6 months, he helped many SAFE horses. When we needed to pick up a mare living on 20 acres who hadn’t been handled in years, Billy was there to bring her comfort in the trailer ride to SAFE. When a SAFE alumni was upset because her boarder friend had left, Billy came to the rescue and provided comfort again. This time he received training in the process by SAFE Alum Sophie’s adopter, Julie. Check out his training progress while in foster with Julie, in the videos below.
Billy’s story demonstrates the reason SAFE does the work we do. Here was a horse who was used and tossed away. Being passed from home to home due to all the trouble he experienced in his life made him less desirable to potential owners. The SAFE community provided him a place to recover, so that a kind family could find a pony to make their own. We are happy for Billy and the three generations of this family who will provide love and care for the rest of his life.
Billy has come so far in the 8 weeks he has been with his foster family. Julie has been hard working hard. Here is a couple videos she sent to us.
He is ready for a family to adopt him who can continue the great work he has been getting with SAFE. He is not suitable for kids, is shy at being caught and loves other horses.
Foster “mom” Julie has been putting time in gentling Billy and her work and consistency is paying off! We’ve seen some significant changes in him. With patient groundwork, his fear is decreasing and he is learning to trust. While Billy’s education will likely be an ongoing project, the improvements we’re seen over the past few weeks are encouraging. That said, his ideal adopter would be able to continue working with him and establish trust in their relationship.
Billy has also been turned out with Julie’s full-size mare and the two get along very well. Billy is a sweet boy and you can see that he is starting to enjoy the connection with his handler. Julie also has a young daughter that has been spending some time with Billy. We recommend that all small children are watched carefully when near horses, but we’re happy to report that Billy is getting use to the sight and sounds of a little one. He is cautious but pleasant around her.
Billy seems to have settled into his new life at SAFE. He’s so quiet in his stall, you could walk right by him with noticing he’s there! He loves his salt block, his meals of timothy and doesn’t seem to mind that volunteers are always fawning over him through his stall window. Billy is still a little timid and he gets very uncomfortable about changing eyes on people and anyone going near his hind end, but he’s warming up to being caught in his stall and leads like a gentleman. Soon he will be off quarantine and will get a nice paddock to run around in! Maybe even a little friend to play with! Little Billy has stolen our hearts, that’s for sure!
(photo by Candi Kintzley. Casey working with Billy in the perfect light.)
Billy came into SAFE last Tuesday thanks to the help of driver Jane Ostrom Millar and pony wrangler Ian LeFae. He is a 2002 model (18yrs old). Pony type, brown and white paint 10.2h gelding. His R
right eye has a blind spot, not painful. He has vision and manages well. He has no medical history so he will get all his vaccinations and have them boosted a month afterwards.
This week he had his 1st set of vaccines, a dental and sheath cleaning this week. And met with our awesome farrier Daphne today. He was a very brave boy but clearly mistreated in the past.
Behavior is scared and shy to be touched on his hind but friendly and fairly easily catch in a small area. He is quiet and content in a stall and not stressed. He may have been used as a “bucking” horse for kids to ride and was bought from an auction earlier this year. He was then taken in by a young family 2 months ago. They had not been able to catch him on their 4 acres. Unfortunately he and the goats where not doing so well together and the young woman who owned him knew she didn’t have the experience to help him.
He will finish his 21 day Quarantine on Tuesday November 10th.