the Wonder Pony
is a beautiful little Shetland pony who came to the Equine
Rescue League in February 2004. He is a wonderful example
of the breed, with his finely shaped head, sweet nature,
thick coat, and full mane and tail. He is solid black
in color, with a large white star in the center of his
forehead. Everyone who meets him, loves him, and he truly
enjoys his human friends.
wonderful as he is, Midnight’s life before arriving
at the ERL was far from perfect.
much is known about his past, but we do know that Midnight
was abandoned in a field after his elderly owner passed
away. It is possible that he was there for several years
before anyone became aware of his presence. Fortunately,
a gentleman noticed the neglected little pony, and contacted
a local vet to have Midnight humanely euthanized. After
examining Midnight, the vet was sure the pony could recover,
and he recommended Midnight not be euthanized, but turned
over to the Equine Rescue League for rehabilitation.
you know anything about Shetland ponies, you know they
are tough and sturdy creatures. However, even a Shetland
pony needs regular care and maintenance. Midnight was
neglected for many years, and his arrival at the ERL brought
tears to the eyes of the volunteers.
Midnight upon his arrival at the ERL
he was in his fuzzy winter coat, it was clear he was underweight.
His tail, mane, and the hair on his legs were matted with
burrs. Most noticeable, however, were his hooves. His
front feet were long and flat, and obviously in need of
a trim, but his back feet had grown so long, they had
curled up, over, and around, like ram’s horns, or
diet had probably been poor, but another reason for his
weight loss was soon discovered. Horse and pony teeth
need regular filing, or “floating.” Due to
lack of care, Midnight had developed severe, pointed hooks
on his molars. These had impeded the chewing motion of
his jaw, and had ulcerated the inside of his cheeks. Eating
would have been a very painful and difficult process for
him. Proving what a wonder he was, Midnight stood quietly
for the dentist and required no sedation while his teeth
were rasped, and the points clipped off his molars.
Closeup of Midnight's hind feet
was also well-behaved for the farrier, who carefully trimmed
the flat hooves in front, and then cut away the curling
elf shoes at the rear. Midnight was sore for a while,
and because of the injury to his back feet, he spent several
weeks wearing “booties” of duct tape, memory
foam, and iodine pads. However, with regular trimming
by the farrier, and careful cleansing and medicating of
his back feet, Midnight’s hooves were well on their
way to regaining a more normal shape.
has a way to go yet, but his feet are looking better all
the time, and his weight and condition are almost normal.
He could barely chew when he first arrived at the ERL,
but now he finishes every meal with gusto, and loves to
have treats of carrot, apple, and ginger snaps. The scruffy,
skinny Shetland who could barely walk can now canter and
play in his paddock, and his new winter coat is so healthy
and thick he looks like a plush Christmas toy. He is truly
wonderful, and everyone at the ERL loves him dearly!
to Horse Stories.