Butterscotch

SEX: Mare BREED: Grade REG NAME: none
INTAKE DATE: 10/8/2019
COLOR: White MARKINGS:    
YOB: 1991 AGE: 28 HEIGHT: 15.2hh WEIGHT: 1005 lbs (Oct 2019)
LOCATION: Redmond ADOPTION FEE: TBD Online Adoption Application  

Butterscotch and three other horses were seized by Animal Control after being moved from another county to evade law enforcement. These horses were badly neglected, starved, and in desperate need of veterinary care. Sadly, a mare that was seized with this group was humanely euthanized by animal control due to her poor condition. These horses were part of a large herd living together in a barren, overgrazed pasture in King County. They were housed with multiple other horses in a heavily over-grazed paddock, and they were sporadically fed poor quality hay in insufficient amounts. None of the seized horses appear to have been capable of fending off younger and equally hungry horses to get to their food.

Butterscotch is a 28 year old mare who had previously been diagnosed with Cushing’s Disease while in her owner’s care, but was not receiving treatment. She has a long, shaggy coat that has not shed out, which is a classic indicator of Cushing’s. When her levels were tested after her seizure, she had an ACTH level of 468, which is extremely high (normal at this time of year is less than 100). She is underweight (BCS 2-3), with muscle loss, long, chipped hooves, anemia, parasites, and several small melanoma on her lips, tail, and anus. A dental exam revealed a loose tooth, and the sharp points and waves that develop when a horse’s teeth aren’t floated on a regular basis. With her teeth fixed and a steady supply of good feed, Butterscotch is already brighter; in fact the vet who did her 30 day recheck described her as “sassy”!

All SAFE horses are adopted with a no-breeding clause, no exceptions.

Butterscotch: Intake Photos and Assesment

Butterscotch: Intake Photos and Assesment

Butterscotch has been with SAFE for just over a week. She is settling in, eating well and has been very gentle to handle. Below are her initial medical assessments and week one photos.

Butterscotch  is approximately 28-32 years old, a grade mare. She is 15.2hh and weighs 1005 pounds. She has melanomas on several areas of her body, which is not surprising for an older grey horse with dark skin. None of them seem to be causing any problems at this time but we will be monitoring them. She has been diagnosed with PPID (Cushing’s Disease) and just started Prascend. We will recheck her ACTH in a month. She is very itchy all over, and is healing from a skin infection that was noted while at the animal control facility. Her skin infection was thought to be PPID related. Her hooves are long and chipped. Butterscotch got a dental and vaccines prior to her arrival at SAFE. She had a significant wave mouth at that time and had one loose extracted.

Dr. Renner was out to see Butterscotch on 10/16 to assess her severe itching. It appears as though the skin infection that she had before has healed, and her current itchiness is more allergen-related. It does not appear to be bug bite hypersensitivity since it’s not presenting in the typical spots. He recommended a few different products to put her on to help control her symptoms, so we have started those and we’ll see if she improves.

If she continues to be itchy and it becomes a quality of life issue, we can consider putting her on prednisolone. That would be a last resort though because long-term use of steroids is not recommended in horses that have Cushing’s disease due to a risk of laminitis.

Three New Intakes at SAFE

Three New Intakes at SAFE

SAFE welcomed three new horses to the herd today. These horses were badly neglected, starved, and in desperate need of veterinary care when they were seized from their owner by Pierce County Animal Control. A fourth horse that was also seized with this group was humanely euthanized due to her poor condition.

The horses were transported to SAFE from Pierce County, where they had been held following their seizure as required by law. Their owner did not petition the court for their return, so ownership has been signed over to SAFE by the county.

Butterscotch

BUTTERSCOTCH is a 28 year old mare who had previously been diagnosed with Cushing’s Disease while in her owner’s care, but was not receiving treatment. She has a long, shaggy coat that has not shed out, which is a classic indicator of Cushing’s. When her levels were tested after her seizure, she had an ACTH level of 468, which is extremely high (normal at this time of year is less than 100). She is underweight (BCS 2-3), with muscle loss, long, chipped hooves, anemia, parasites, and several small melanoma on her lips, tail, and anus. A dental exam revealed a loose tooth, and the sharp points and waves that develop when a horse’s teeth aren’t floated on a regular basis. With her teeth fixed and a steady supply of good feed, Butterscotch is already brighter; in fact the vet who did her 30 day recheck described her as “sassy”!

 

Mara

MARA is a 30+ year old Shetland pony, who also has extremely high ACTH levels and suffering from Cushing’s Disease. She is extremely thin (BCS 1.5) with long hooves, parasites, muscle loss and ataxia. She also has a scarred cornea in her left eye and had copious green discharge from both eyes, indicating bacterial conjunctivitis. An oral exam revealed four missing teeth, two loose teeth, and one broken tooth, and most of her remaining teeth had very sharp points and no remaining grinding surface. So not only was Mara unable to chew hay, her neglected teeth were creating large and painful ulcers on the inside of her mouth. She’s been put on a mash diet to ensure that she’s now getting the calories and nutrients that she needs. She’s started gaining weight, and now appears healthier and more comfortable.

 

Farley

FARLEY is a 25 year old red roan breeding stock paint gelding with a BCS of 2 . He came in very thin, with muscle wasting, stiffness, swollen limbs, problems with his eyes, including puffiness and clear discharge, and a possible squamous cell carcinoma on his muzzle. His teeth were also neglected, with sharp points and minimal grinding surfaces remaining. Because of this, the vet recommended that his diet should consist mainly of soaked pelleted mashes, along with small servings of alfalfa hay. After 30 days of care, Farley is still moving slowly, but he’s gaining weight and looking healthier.

Prior to their arrival in Pierce County, these horses were part of a large herd living together in a barren, overgrazed pasture in King County. These elderly horses were housed with multiple other horses in a heavily over-grazed paddock, and they were sporadically fed poor quality hay in insufficient amounts. None of the seized horses appear to have been capable of fending off younger and equally hungry horses to get to their food. And the condition of their teeth caused them to drop partly chewed hay as they tried to eat, something that an observant owner with fewer horses might have noticed.

Pierce County will be pursuing first degree felony animal cruelty charges against the horses’ former owner for their failure to properly care for the four seized horses. They are working closely with RASKC (King Co Animal Control) who had been monitoring the herd for the past year, and who were preparing to seize the four themselves when their owner moved them to Pierce County.

The fact that the county is pursuing a first degree conviction is likely a good indication that they have a strong case against the owner. This individual is also currently facing animal cruelty charges in Snohomish County for a group of horses that included SAFE’s Amelia. Should the owner be found guilty of the charges against them, Washington state law says they’ll be prohibited from owning, caring for, or residing with any similar animals for two years (for animal cruelty in the second degree) or permanently (for animal cruelty in the first degree or a second conviction of animal cruelty in the second degree.)

But while the courts do their duty, our job is clear: to continue rehabilitating these horses and return them to good health, good weight, and hopefully, some happiness. We’ll keep you posted as to their progress, so keep your good thoughts and well wishes coming their way!

 

safekeepers

 

Butterscotch’s Friends:

1. Owen

2. Beth E.

3. Jane M.

4. Tami L

5. Whitney-Bear B.

6. Janis G.

7. _____________________

8. _____________________

9. _____________________

10._____________________

Every horse deserves at least ten friends! Even a small monthly donation can make a difference. Plus, SAFE horse sponsors receive discounts at local businesses through the SAFEkeepers program!

Click here to sponsor Butterscotch