When a horse comes to the end of its use, after years of partnership and work, what happens to it? What happens if that end is due to the hard work asked of it? Through no fault of their own, being put into situations that a horse wouldn’t have chosen of its own accord – what now?

For loving horse owners, it means hopefully rehabbing their equine partner so that they can live a pain-free life. Maybe in a new discipline. Maybe as a buddy to their next mount. If that can’t be achieved, they’ll opt to have the vet out to put them to sleep. However for businesses and those without the emotional attachment to their horses, auction tends to be their choice.

Such is the story of newly rescued Parker. His true name isn’t known, not that it matters. He’s sleek, impressive, well put together and beautiful. His love note said he was a jumper. To have such a beautiful, satin coat in March, in Ontario is to know that his previous life was plush. You don’t get a coat like that without being in a heated barn, blanketed, grooming and hands on care.

How he ended up at auction and within a breath of being slaughtered was a mystery.That is until he ended up in a loving rescue and abnormal muscle development, indicative of a long standing injury at the base of his neck raised eyebrows. Veterinary examination found an issue with the C4 and C5 vertebrae. It’s serious enough that his previous owners decided it was a career ending injury.

This is where Parker’s plush care ended. The rescue has no idea of how the injury was sustained. Nor do they have any knowledge of the treatment, if any that he may have received.

What is known that any movement is painful for him. For those of you with neck and back issues, you know full well of how difficult it is to function. It is known that his previous owners gave up on him and rather than giving him the final kindness of putting him down at his home, they opted to ship him. At best, to a home with no knowledge of his issues. At worst, to a terrorizing end at slaughter.

To make things worse, he’s been shipped around, shuffled through chutes and housed with strange horses. Add that he doesn’t have a warm winter coat. Imagine being shipped outside in mid-March in Ontario without a coat. Add his shivering, attempting to keep warm while in horrible pain from his injury. Causing further damage.

Luckily Kindred Farm Rescue, Rehab and Rehome (an approved Not for Profit Organization and pre-approved as a charity), came to the rescue of this poor boy. Through a network he has found a soft landing. The flip side is that his bills are racking up. His purchase price, trailering, quarantine, vet evaluation, a second opinion, his board, medication to keep him comfortable….

Parker has a long road ahead of him. With any luck, he’ll recover while under the watchful eye of Kindred Farm. The worst case scenario will find that his injuries are too extensive and he’ll need to be put down. In order to fully assess his needs and to give him the best possible care, we’ll need to fund his journey.

UPDATE: I’m sorry for allowing this post to remain so long without an update. Parker was released from his pain. His injuries were too extensive. The excessive drugs left his system after the auction and left him crippled. Even with the drugs, he was still in pain. No treatment could alleviate his discomfort or correct the terrible injury he was left with.

His last days found him in loving hands. He had a buddy to keep him company. Hearts broke the day he was let go, but he was loved.

He’s now buried on Kindred Farm. He’s in good company on the edge of the field. Overlooking the grazing pasture of the horses still looking for home. Parker will never be forgotten.

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