This is Simon, a horse spotted by one of our volunteers on Craigslist, being offered for "Free". It's likely he was free because he is so emaciated they could not squeeze a few last dollars out of him by selling him to the killer buyers for slaughter. He has no body fat and has severe muscle wasting due to long-term starvation. We saved just in time as surely he would not survive the cold desert winter.
So bad was Simon's condition our veterinarian was called out the night of his rescue to ensure he was not suffering from an incurable state and would need to be put to rest. While certainly not in great shape, the vet cleared Simon for a road of recovery and rehab at Joey's Home.
Like many horses rescued from neglect, Simon suffers not only from severe starvation but also eye problems related to dehydration (no water bucket was seen when he was rescued), rough hair coat likely due to intestinal parasites, a fungal skin infection from exposure and lack of care as well as infections in all four hooves due to standing in his own manure. So bad is the infection in one foot it has almost eaten to the bone.
And like many horses rescued from neglect there much evidence that Simon had been abused. He had rope cuts on his lower legs and x-rays revealed a very damaged ankle with an old fracture. These are the cardinal signs that Simon had be "tripped" a Charreada (Mexican rodeo) event in which horses are whipped to run at full speed only to be have a Charro rope his front legs and "trip" him. It's a barbaric event and, despite being illegal, such abused horses can often be found in local slaughter pens after the events.
Although Simon was saved in time he has a long path to recovery and of course, this care translates to money. He has already incurred veterinary bills for x-rays and medications but also for feed and farrier (blacksmith) care. He will need blankets, special diet due to being starved, further medications and a dental treatment as well. The founder of Joey's Home, Melinda Allen, and the volunteers at the rescue are committed to aiding Simon to health but need your donations - please give what you can, every donation helps and is appreciated.
If you're in the Joshua Tree area get in touch with Melinda to visit Simon and the other rescue horses at Joey's Home.