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Platinum Performance Horse Welfare Awards



Nickname: Thunder
Birth Year: 2006. Gender: Gelding. Breed: American Warmblood/Hanoverian.
Affiliated with H.O.R.S.E. of CT, Inc. .


Thunder is a 12 year old 18+ hands branded American Warmblood. He was bought as a 4 year old, stabled by his owner, and used for riding. About a year ago, he was moved to a private farm in Granby, CT to save on board. There he was kept outdoors 24/7 in a large flat field with no shade or shelter. Two other horses were in sight but not near him. In just the last few weeks he has been traumatized several times. His owner suffered a heart attack and died while visiting him. Thunder was indirectly struck by lightning which caused burns to his face and the loss of sight in his left eye. Shortly after on the 4th of July, he was frightened by fireworks and ran through an electric fence sustaining cuts in the process. When the family of the owner decided to give him up, one of our adopters contacted us with his history. He was brought to H.O.R.S.E. the next day and became one of 23 horses in our care.

Our vet was called immediately to do a thorough exam, clean and dress his injuries, and administer vaccinations which hadn’t been done since Thunder was 4. His body condition was determined to be 3 in the Henneke scoring system. He is now living in a 1/2 acre grass paddock with a run-in shed and is next to other horses for company. He will be paired with one or two compatible companions when he has regained strength. He is on a low carb, high fat diet with a constant supply of first and second cutting hay and fresh water. He has gained 30 of the 150 pounds he needs and is on a trail-walking exercise program for 20-30 minutes every other day to build up his muscles. On his second visit, the vet reported the burns to Thunder’s face have healed and he can see shadows with his left eye. It is expected that he will be ready to go back to work as a riding horse in 6 months. He was introduced to visitors at our horse showing last weekend and entertained them by running freely in the outdoor ring and dropping and rolling in the sand. He doesn’t take corners well but was determined to try. He so impressed one visitor that she became his first sponsor.

Thunder has been very good with the volunteers who groom and walk him. He enjoyed his first bath, was good for the farrier who replaced his shoes, accepted worming and shots without a problem. He’s gentle and loves attention. He gets very excited when he sees his new horse friends running in our 5 acre field and wants to join them. For now he runs his fence line to keep up and let them know it is his home too.

Common with his size and breed, Thunder has string halt and shivers. For these problems and the effects of poor nutrition, we think he would be well suited for Platinum Performance CJ to help strengthen his muscles and support his bone structure.

Relationship of Nominator to Nominee
Thunder was taken in by Patty Wahlers who is the founder and owner of H.O.R.S.E. of Connecticut, the rescue farm in Washington, CT where I have been a volunteer for 7 years. He has only been with us since July 5th and was surrendered by his owners. -- Nancy J. Cackowski