We are celebrating the one-year anniversary of a special soul that came into our lives at Pets Alive under very challenging circumstances. In the world of rescue, our entire day can change in an instant by one phone call. That phone call can change an animal’s life forever. On a day in June of 2015, we got one such call. Orange County Sheriff’s Dept. called us to assist in evaluating the conditions of a horse on an abandoned property. What we found was a young horse living all alone amongst rubble, barely contained by fencing that was broken down and pieced together with twine. He had no viable source of food. With his current body condition, it was clear that he wasn’t going to be able to survive much longer. We later found out that he had never been handled by humans. To get this young colt to safety was going to be one of the greatest challenges we have faced.
After he was safe and sound in our care, Farm Manager Cindy, worked with Joey to allow him to be approached and handled. It was important that Joey willingly made the decision to have the interaction on his own. Cindy used “Natural Horsemanship” techniques to accomplish this. Horses are very social and have a herd structure. They use body language to communicate with each other and constantly are having “conversations” by the way they move, where they stand, and even where their eyes and ears are directed. Using the same language, Joey was learning that he could trust in his new caretakers and understand what was being asked of him without fear or trauma.
Joey has shown us from the beginning how incredibly smart he is and how willing he is to interact with us. The first time he allowed Cindy to touch him, brought tears to her eyes, and changed his view even further. He loved being touched and scratched. It seemed as though he wanted more and was looking to learn new things. Pretty quickly, he had a halter on and Cindy started teaching him to lead and pick up his feet. Again showing how intelligent and trusting he is, he was quickly learning to go around obstacles and even over tarps and things that may seem scary to a young horse. Joey was taking it all in stride! His training continues every day with consistent handling and love!
One year after his arrival, Joey is a whole new horse! The horse that had no name for the first 2 years of his life, is now a part of the Pets Alive family. He has gained weight and is healthy. He has friends to hang out with and socialize with. Most importantly, Joey is loved!!!!
Miracles happen every day! It’s not just one person that makes a miracle happen. It’s not just one person that saves a life. Everyone that helped, in what even seemed like a small gesture, played a huge and important part in saving Joey’s life. From the person that first made the call about an abandoned horse, Orange Co Sheriff’s Dept., the rescues that offered their assistance, and even the people that offered emotional support in a trying time….it took all of it to make a miracle.
Our Humane Educator, Lauren Jones, was also a key part in saving Joey and bringing him to safety. Please watch the touching video she made documenting his rescue and rehabilitation. A special thanks to Lauren, staff, and all of you that helped saved Joey. This is a story of only one of the many miracles that we are a part of every day. We couldn’t save lives without the support of every one of you that volunteers, donates, and help us love the animals who so much deserve it!
The miracle of Joey and his ongoing rehabilitation is made possible by the support of our donors. Without you, we would not be able to save the lives of the Joey’s in this world. Please consider donating or becoming a monthly sponsor and be part of the miracles that happen at Pets Alive.