Very sorry to hear that things turned out this way. For some reason, a lot of people on COTH have found it fashionable lately to go "dissing" Rescues. I wonder how many of 'em have the guts to walk a mile in YOUR moccasins?
You are an angel of mercy, ma'am. Keep up the good work. Remember--she's out there somewhere, and karma comes back at'cha threefold.
I am so so very sorry to hear this news. And we always seem to ask ourselves if we hadn't arrived on the scene earlier could the (fill in the blank with whatever critter is being neglected) have been saved.
Not wanting to hijack but just want to say that in many areas (like mine) livestock are not given the same consideration as neglected dogs, etc.
Sometimes it's too late for the dogs. The rescue I foster/volunteer for just lost Haji, a Doberman who was pulled from someone's backyard 30lbs underweight. He started vomiting undigested food, went into the ER vet, but his organs were just too far gone. You can only do what you can do, but sometimes it's just give them a comfortable place to go, and there's always "What if it was a month/week/day sooner...."
I'm still waiting to hear from the team what the autopsy report found.
I think the part of this whole case that has me so damn sad is the location of the pony. She was right around the corner from my house. I drive my elementary kid to school every day and I drove right by this location for months. I couldn't see her from the road.
This is a PSA to all of us out there. Know your neighbors. Keep an eye out for activity. If you see a ramshackle abandoned property that was recently left vacant, take a good hard look at whether the occupants left animals there. If you see a pasture area that was occupied but now looking overgrown, consider whether the animal is still in there, starving. If you see an overgrown pasture that suddenly has animals in it, keep an eye on whether they look good from the start or start to look poor in just a few weeks.
Don't ever be afraid or hesitant to stick your nose into someone else's beeswax. It may be the only thing between life or death for some animal.
I know the person who reported this case. It can be seen from the home this person lives in. This person is dealing with the grief of not calling sooner, having watched this from the kitchen window. This person owned horses and knew tying a pony out on a lead was not good practice. I don't hold this person accountable for waiting. We all know that if the pony had food and water available, all we could have done is give the owner a warning and require the owner to provide better accommodations. And then we would have had to give the owner the reasonable amount of days or weeks to correct the infraction.
It takes a certain kind of stupid to put into play laws that tie the hands of the authorities, not the hands of the offenders...
I continue to get emails from you guys that are sending in donations. Thank you and know that I am making sure our accounting manager is getting every one of those emails forwarded so that your donation can be tagged for Charity. Please tell all your friends to go to the site and give, even if it's just a few dollars. This owner needs to feel the sting of prosecution. I realize the punishment is meager compared to the offense. But remember, there is always public humiliation as well. This person has to tell the grandkids that the pony bought for them died because of him.
I work in an industry where abuse is rampant. I can easily name two dozen trainers I know personally that freely use ridiculously tough techniques on their training animals, all for the sake of winning. But we know that these abuses are so much more subjective in the eyes of the competitive client public.
But starvation is not subjective. Neglect is not subjective. It's the product of ignorance and apathy. Please don't ever be afraid to call out someone who's lack of knowledge and lack of compassion has an animal held prisoner in suffering. We are the voice....