"Judge not lest ye be judged"
**this may be a bit of a rant, and kinda long, you have been forewarned** ;)
Whether you're religious or not its a good piece of advice, and something a few local people would do well to keep in mind.
There's been a bit of a 'thing' going on in our little local community. You see there is a woman, "J" travelling across the country by foot, camping out along the way. Minding her own business and not causing any trouble. But a local 'rescue' group is stirring things up. Because J happens to have a horse with her.
"Homeless with a horse" played on the local news. The rescue lady is trying to get J's horse taken from her with all kinds of claims flying about. I happened to catch them on Facebook. The stuff being said was kinda ridiculous. It reminded me of how bad the mob mentality could get on Fugly back in the day (I haven't read there lately) and it was pretty evident that, as on Fugly, most of these people had no first hand knowledge of the situation but rather than find anything out for themselves they were blindly following along.
When the fit hit the shan about this locally J was camping at the west edge of the city. The rescue lady was stirring things up so much that J moved and now she and her mare are camped out at the 'fairgrounds' of our town. I stopped there today, which was actually kinda hard for me to do as I don't really like strangers lol
I wanted to know for myself if this lady & her horse were okay, if there was anything I could do to help them out or if maybe all the crap swirling around Facebook was actually true.
J is nice, a bit eccentric maybe but not a raving lunatic. She said that she prefers to live outside as much as possible and is originally from Quebec. She is making her way to western Alberta or BC for the winter, hoping for a milder climate where she and her horse can continue to live outside.
The horse, ah yes the horse... the reason for the drama. She may be a bit thin but more on the thin side of average than skinny, she's not "starving". J got the horse 2 months or so ago. The horse looks well, she needs muscling & conditioning to fill out more than groceries (and after all its late summer/early fall... the mare is getting plenty of grass and isn't being worked too hard)
Yes she has only 3 shoes, she just lost one recently. The rescue lady had "she's only got THREE shoes!" as part of her complaint. Oh my! Please, how many of you that shoe your horses NEVER EVER lose a shoe?
Yes there are a few sores on the mare. As a matter of fact I noticed the same type of sores on one of my friend's horses recently. They are not the kind of sores that are caused by abuse or neglect. Again, if any of you have ever had a horse that NEVER gets a scrape/bump/cut please let me know how you managed that short of covering it in bubble wrap and putting it in in a rubber padded stall.
She does seem a bit off on one hind. There is some thickening on the pastern, so it is most likely an old injury.
As for the claims that J stole this horse, or 'found it', NO it is J's horse. She has a bill of sale including a photocopy of the certified cheque. (which I never asked to see, it was information she volunteered)
The local SPCA and the local police had all been out and said there was no reason to take J's horse from her but this lady from the rescue still keeps harassing her. I'm so glad that I stopped and saw for myself that the situation seems fine. I told J (who at that time had not told me her name) that I'd be back with the few supplies that she hesitatingly asked for.
When I came back with the supplies there was another local lady ("S") there, the one I had seen standing up for J on Facebook. J introduced herself and thanked me for the stuff I brought, I introduced myself to S and while I was there the vet also stopped by, he agrees that the horse is fine (and the rescue happens to be one of his clients so he said he'd talk to her & try to get her to leave J alone) and the local news came to get some shots to finish up their update on the story - J had called them after the first story, someone had shown it to her and it did not tell HER side of the story at all but rather the rescue lady's.
Another one of the other reason's that's popped up for taking J's horse is that "its so cruel to the horse to travel that way". Umm, HELLO how the heck do you think Canada & the US were settled? By people walking, people riding & driving horses (and mules, and oxen, etc) NOT by fricking cars. Its a heck of a lot healthier for a horse for it to be out moving everyday than to spend most of its day in a stall or small pen, and how many horses live like that?!