Tag Archives: Horse Care

America’s Horses Will Benefit from the COVID-19 Matching Campaign Underway

Horses across the country need us now more than ever and many are in dire need of a lifeline. Thanks to a generous challenge gift from an anonymous donor, every $1 you donate between now and June 30 becomes $2 — up to a maximum of $25,000 — to help feed and care for the horses of EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

For horses to remain an important part of American life and have a viable future, we need to ensure that donor dollars are being spent on programs with the greatest impact – programs that not only increase adoptions of at-risk horses and provide a safe haven for aged horses, but also increase opportunities for all people to engage and partner with horses in new innovative ways.

Many more horses now are at risk of losing their homes – and their lives – due to this global crisis. The EQUUS Foundation helps America’s at-risk horses and we are asking for your help so that, together, we can offer a safety net for horses that now have no place to go.

With so many people facing hardships, our fear is that many more of our four-legged equine friends may be subjected to abuse and neglect and the number of horses heading to the slaughter pipeline will increase.

At the heart of the EQUUS Foundation’s mission is the EQUUS Foundation Guardians program. EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities undergo a rigorous vetting process annually to demonstrate that they are committed to the highest standards for horse care and are transparent and accountable by making their horse care practices and operations available to public scrutiny. Only EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities are eligible to receive financial support from the EQUUS Foundation.

Our rescues are reporting an increase in requests from owners who can no longer care for their horses — and our charities providing therapeutic services are finding it difficult to foresee when they will needing their full herds for a long time.

There’s no better way to give with confidence than to give to EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities — and there’s no better time to give than RIGHT NOW because every dollar you give will double between now and June 30th.

Will you lend a hand to America’s horses and help us reach our goal by June 30? Please make your gift here!

Contact the EQUUS Foundation, Inc., at 168 Long Lots Road, Westport, CT 06880, Tele: (203) 259-1550, E-Mail: mail@equusfoundation.org, Website: www.equusfoundation.org.

A Brighter Tomorrow at Days End Farm Horse Rescue

Though it has been a challenging few months for all of us, we’re so grateful to our many supporters who continue to help Days End Farm Horse Rescue. During May 5th’s Giving Tuesday Now campaign, we were thrilled to reach our goal of raising $25,000 for the horses. Once again, our amazing community of supporters came together in a time of crisis to show that there is hope for tomorrow. Because of your outpouring of support, you can trust that we are better prepared for the months ahead and will be ready to respond in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Every dollar counts, and we’re incredibly grateful. If you missed that opportunity to donate, please consider making a gift today.

Prepared for Emergencies

Back in March, we closed our facility to the general public and regular volunteers, and the office personnel worked from home. We made this decision to protect the health of our animal care staff, while following the State of Maryland’s guidelines. Because we had protocols in place for such emergency situations, we were able to quickly create a highly functional, efficient system to keep things running smoothly and safely at the farm.

News from the Farm

Our amazing animal care team at DEFHR have gone above and beyond to keep our horses healthy and happy, even under challenging circumstances. Our trainers, Sara Nyman-Strauss and Leigha Schrader, have been sharing weekly video updates in their “Life on the Farm” series giving behind-the-scenes look into the care and training of the horses. Click here to watch this week’s episode. What a talented group we have right now!

Volunteer Program Updates

Currently, our regular volunteer program remains closed as Maryland enters Phase 1 of the slow reopening process. We are using Maryland’s Road Map to Recovery to aid in determining when and how we can safely reopen the volunteer program. We will keep you posted as we make more decisions on this process. Thank you all for your support and understanding. We miss you and can’t wait for the day we welcome you back. Stay healthy, everyone!

Days End Farm Horse Rescue – www.DEFHR.org

COVID-19 Matching Campaign: Help Us Help Them

Thanks to a generous challenge gift from an anonymous donor, every $1 you donate now becomes $2 — up to a maximum of $25,000 — to help feed and care for the horses of EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Horses bring joy to young and old alike – and make those with the deepest of wounds whole again. However, America’s horses are also confronted with a disturbing reality. Over 65,000 horses were transported across our borders for slaughter in 2019. Tens of thousands more are abused and neglected and in need of rescue, rehabilitation, and re-homing each year.

With so many people facing hardships, our fear is that many more of our four-legged equine friends may be subjected to abuse and neglect and the number of horses heading to the slaughter pipeline will increase.

For horses to remain an important part of American life and have a viable future, we need to ensure that donor dollars are being spent on programs with the greatest impact – programs that not only increase adoptions of at-risk horses and provide a safe haven for aged horses, but also increase opportunities for all people to engage and partner with horses in new innovative ways.

At the heart of the EQUUS Foundation’s mission is the EQUUS Foundation Guardians program. EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities undergo a rigorous vetting process annually to demonstrate that they are committed to the highest standards for horse care and are transparent and accountable by making their horse care practices and operations available to public scrutiny. Only EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities are eligible to receive financial support from the EQUUS Foundation.

There’s no better way to give with confidence than to give to EQUUS Foundation Guardian charities — and there’s no better time to give than RIGHT NOW because every dollar you give will double between now and June 30th.

Act Now to Help Us Reach Our Goal by June 30.
Please make your gift here.

Contact the EQUUS Foundation, Inc., at 168 Long Lots Road, Westport, CT 06880, Tele: (203) 259-1550, E-Mail: mail@equusfoundation.org, Website: www.equusfoundation.org.

Leave Your Footprint and Help a Hoofprint during Brooke USA’s Virtual Fitness Challenge

Lexington, Ky – May 15, 2019 – Across the nation people are doing their part to stay apart, and for those eager to get moving, a virtual race provides the ability to kick-start fitness goals while coming together for a cause. On May 5, Brooke USA, a 501(c)3 dedicated to alleviating the suffering of working equines and the people who depend on them globally, launched its first virtual race. Leave your footprint and help a hoofprint with Brooke USA’s Virtual Race: Between a Walk & a Hard Place. Every dollar raised will directly benefit Brooke USA’s COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund, and with your help, Brooke USA will continue to make a difference in the lives of humans and equines worldwide.

Registration is open at www.CharityFootprints.com/BrookeUSA.

This global initiative is simple to support, and participants can complete it on their own schedule over the course of eight weeks. The goal is to raise funds for the people and animals affected by the aftermath of COVID-19, as well as walk over 140,000,000 steps as a sign of unity and global generosity. The eight-week fitness challenge allows for registrants to not only have their own fundraising page, race chat and teams, but also converts workouts to steps. From Pilates to running, and horseback riding to weightlifting, the Brooke USA Virtual Race encourages fitness for every level, and on any schedule while raising funds and awareness for a cause.

The registration fee is $50, and proceeds benefit Brooke USA’s COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund. The fee includes a finisher’s t-shirt, which will be sent to the participant by mail at the conclusion of the challenge. Brooke USA has assisted with disaster relief in the United States during times of emergency, and in light of COVID-19, the team will once again step up to make a difference by opening the fund to applicants in the U.S. and worldwide.

Since COVID-19 made its way stateside, everyone’s lives have changed dramatically, and this new reality has brought uncertainty to the projects and programs that Brooke USA funds through its grants. To counteract the escalation of poverty and lack of resources in the developing world, Brooke USA is gearing up for the aftermath that is sure to follow in the wake of COVID-19. Brooke USA has set a goal of $100,000 to raise for its COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund, which the virtual race directly supports. For many of the people and animals Brooke USA serves, things will only get worse before they get better. Your donation and/or registration will impact lives.

The race can be completed in whatever way is most enjoyable. For example:

  • Donate to the race or to an individual/team.
  • Run or walk with your dog.
  • Use a treadmill or elliptical.
  • Practice downward dog while taking a yoga class.
  • Dance around the house or take a virtual Zumba class.
  • Garden or go for a swim.

The possibilities are endless.

How does it work?

STEP 1: Register for Brooke USA’s fitness challenge at www.CharityFootprints.com/BrookeUSA. Your registration fee of $50 is a donation to Brooke USA, and at the end of the challenge you will receive a commemorative shirt for your effort and support.

STEP 2: You are registered! Now it is time to download the app and spread the news. Since we are using technology a little bit more today than ever before, let’s lean on it, and rock with it! Tell everyone you know that you signed up for a virtual race and they can support you by joining the race or donating through your personal webpage. Use social media, email, and text messages. You probably already have a few friends in mind who would not mind a little fitness fun. Well, this is the perfect opportunity to put the “FUN” in fundraising and start moving together.

STEP 3: Track your workout exercise of choice (anywhere you are) on the website or by downloading the Charity Footprints App. (It also syncs with your Fitbit, Apple Watch, MisFit, Strava, Google Fit, or Garmin.) Any workout can be converted to steps, and together we will fill in our virtual map by earning 140,000,000 steps. The journey kicks off in Lexington, Kentucky and continues through Brooke USA funded projects in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Cuba, Senegal, Kenya, Ethiopia, Nepal, Pakistan, and India.

The more steps you take, the further we go as a team!

Registration is currently open and will continue until the end of June.  It does not matter if your friends and family want to join in week one or week six, every step counts and every donation helps Brooke USA tip the scales as the organization prepares to tackle the repercussions of COVID-19. Register at www.charityfootprints.com/brookeusa.  For any questions regarding the virtual place, please email Kendall.bierer@brookeusa.org.

Taking a Chance on Madison

Madison at home in Florida. Photo courtesy of Sariah Hopkins.

Palm Beach Equine Clinic helps one mini donkey survive a roller coaster of health concerns

The popular veterinary adage, “if only they could just tell us how they feel,” never rang truer than in the case of an 11-year-old miniature donkey mare named Madison. Owned by Sariah Hopkins, “Madi” came to Palm Beach Equine Clinic by referral and was diagnosed with hyperlipemia, a fatty liver syndrome common in miniature donkeys. Madi’s case, however, was never exactly how it seemed.

Hopkins describes Madi as the “center of attention.” Rescued from an animal hoarding situation by Safe Harbor Sanctuary in Nashville, TN, where Hopkins serves on the Board of Directors, Madi was officially adopted by Hopkins and her husband Joel in 2015.

“She was one of 40 horses and donkeys being kept on four acres of land,” said Sariah, who relocated to Juno Beach, FL with Madi in tow in 2018. “She has always had a super sweet, calm personality, but likes to kick up her heels. We’ve done behavioral health therapy work with foster children and she makes everyone who meets her fall in love. She is so engaging.”

After trading Tennessee for Florida, Madi didn’t adjust to her change in environment with ease. According to Sariah, a systematic decline in her health started as the mare tried to adjust to a new barn, environment, farrier, and life. “She was depressed,” said Sariah. “She wasn’t her bright-eyed self. She’s a donkey and she will eat anything, so when she went off her grain and refused alfalfa, I called a local vet to pull fluids and run blood work.

“I reviewed the results with my vet in Tennessee who knows Madi and her history,” continued Sariah. “They were catastrophically bad, and she told me I needed to get Madi to a clinic immediately. I was referred to Palm Beach Equine Clinic by my friend Nataliya Boyko. Within minutes, I was on the phone with her vet, Dr. Bryan Dubynsky, and soon after we were on our way.”

Once Madison arrived at Palm Beach Equine Clinic, she was treated primarily by Dr. Abby Berzas and overseen by Dr. Dubynsky. They diagnosed her with hyperlipemia, and she remained at the clinic for two weeks.

Hyperlipemia syndrome is a common metabolic disease of ponies, miniature horses, and donkeys. In affected patients, an increase in serum triglyceride concentrations (hypertriglyceridemia) puts them at risk for liver failure, renal failure, and multiorgan dysfunction that can ultimately lead to death.

Genetically, donkeys are designed to live in harsh environments with poor-quality forage. As a result, they tend to put on weight and gain excess fat reserves when living on relatively lush pasture. Unfortunately, when they stop eating for any reason – usually stress induced – hyperlipemia may develop due to a negative energy balance where more energy is being used than is being taken in through eating. The essential organs of the body still require a food supply, so it uses the energy that has been stored as fat deposits. The result is that free fatty acids are circulated to the liver and converted to glucose for use by the body.

However, donkeys are not able to efficiently turn off this fat release. The blood soon fills up with excess fat in circulation, causing them to become very sick and uncomfortable. This circulating fat is measured in the blood as triglycerides.

Madison’s case presented as a severe spike in triglycerides, which can be reduced by introducing sugars into the system. The sugar causes the body to release insulin and drive the triglycerides down.

“She responded well the first day, but we didn’t see the improvement that we would have liked or that she needed,” said Dr. Berzas. “We started more aggressive treatments the following day with insulin therapy and antibiotics. The dextrose caused a physiological increase in insulin, but it wasn’t enough. As soon as she had insulin therapy her triglyceride levels started coming down. They decreased significantly and she started eating again.”

Madison remained on insulin therapy for a week and was evaluated hourly by Palm Beach Equine Clinic veterinarians to monitor the possibility of hypoglycemic shock. When Madison was able to eat regularly and maintain low triglyceride levels without any help, she was discharged.

“I had access to Madi daily, and we made the most of her time in the hospital with long hand walks, grazing, and relaxing in her stall,” said Sariah. “I got updates from the clinic every two to three hours when I wasn’t there, and without any more clinical signs, she appeared to be improving.

“But, when I got her home she still was not herself,” continued Sariah, who spent hours sitting in Madi’s stall with her. Madi’s home was now Sariah and Joel’s private farm and they did all they could to eliminate the stress that supposedly led to Madi’s condition. “She was good for 24 to 48 hours and then would slide backwards again. One afternoon, I was sitting in her stall and she had a coughing fit that I was able to video. I sent it to [Dr. Berzas] and she came out to the farm to check on Madi.”

Dr. Berzas performed a thoracic ultrasound and spotted comet tails in her lungs, leading to one thing: pneumonia.

“We were wracking our brains to figure out what the original stressor might have been that led to the hyperlipemia, but Madi did not display any signs of pneumonia at the clinic and did not cough once,” said Dr. Berzas. “Then, there it was! Donkeys are stoic, tough animals, and sometimes they don’t give us traditional clinical signs.”

While hyperlipemia was the result, pneumonia was the cause.

“Cortisol, also known as the ‘stress hormone’ has a vast array of effects within the body, and it is one of the first triggers for the body to recruit energy from its peripheral stores,” explained Palm Beach Equine Clinic Internal Medicine Specialist Dr. Peter Heidmann. “It minimizes discomfort and increases blood pressure and metabolic rate, basically saying, ‘Now is not the time to conserve energy for the future. I need energy now in order to survive.’ In Madison’s case, the infection prompted the body to need more than average energy – it needed extra fuel to fight the infection.”

The typical diagnostic procedure for pneumonia is a tracheal wash procedure, but after consulting with Dr. Heidmann, Dr. Berzas elected to try and mitigate any further stress on Madison by choosing a less invasive procedure. Instead, Dr. Berzas used a special stylette that allowed them to go through the nasal sinuses and cleanly aspirate back cellular fluid for analysis. This option is called a bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), and is most typically used for diagnosing cell types in the lungs.

“After culturing her fluid aspirate, she went back on antibiotics and responded well,” said Dr. Berzas. “She also had nebulizer treatments that delivered antibiotics directly to the lungs, which is the best way to treat the infection.”

One month after the pneumonia diagnosis, Sariah was proud to report that Madi had made a full recovery. “When we brought her in that first day, we frankly were getting ready to say goodbye,” said Sariah. “We were devastated, and Dr. Dubynsky agreed to try and save Madi. Thank goodness he did!”

Once the pneumonia was cleared, Madi’s routine returned to normal and the hyperlipemia was no longer an issue. Today, Madi is happily overseeing the day-to-day at Sariah and Joel’s farm.

“Palm Beach Equine Clinic treats some of the top sport horses in the world, but I feel that Madi – a very special donkey – received the same treatment,” concluded Sariah. “Dr. Berzas was 100% available to me, and she championed Madi. I could not be more thankful to her and the entire team of veterinarians and staff who rallied around our Madi.”

“When we have a case that’s particularly challenging to diagnose,” Dr. Berzas remarked, “it just reminds us of how fortunate we are to be part of a team of specialists. At Palm Beach Equine Clinic, we are able to tap into the knowledge and experience of our fellow veterinarians from different specialties, and really deliver that value for the patient.”

Sariah chronicled Madi’s condition and recovery on her Facebook page, developing quite a fan base for the little donkey. Madi’s story is far from over, but now she’s telling it herself and can be followed on Facebook as @MadisonJoelleDonk.

Palm Beach Equine Clinic
www.EquineClinic.com

Days End Farm Horse Rescue: Planning for the Future

As Days End Farm Horse Rescue (DEFHR) navigates through our sixth week under strict quarantine restrictions, our staff continues to push through, thanks to our community of supporters. We are so grateful to everyone who has donated or reached out to see how they could help and if we are okay. The horses are all being well taken care of and are oblivious to the crisis unfolding around them.

Because of your support, DEFHR is able to react in the face of emergencies such as COVID-19 and quickly enact policies and procedures to protect the health of our staff and horses. Days End Farm is currently caring for 80 horses, including seven critically ill mares. Your support allows us to prepare for the weeks ahead, with the promise that we will do everything we can to help horses in need. Every horse in this video is currently in our care and every transformation is made possible because of our loyal supporters. Thank you for fighting alongside us. Together we will get through this.

Click here to donate to our COVID-19 Preparedness Fund.

Days End Farm Horse Rescue – www.DEFHR.org

Brooke USA Launches Fundraising Effort to Fight Coronavirus Pandemic

Lexington, KY (April 10, 2020) – Brooke USA has launched a crisis fundraising campaign for friends and supporters to provide humanitarian aid during the growing global fight against the COVID-19 novel coronavirus.

The Board of Directors of Broke USA will manage the COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund which is designed to address the need for humanitarian aid across the globe. In response to the spread of the coronavirus, Brooke USA is committed to meeting the needs of equine-dependent communities impacted by the pandemic both in the United States and in the developing world.

Countries across Asia, Africa, the Middle East, the Americas, and the Caribbean are going to need increased assistance. Brooke USA recognizes that in the developing world there is a lack of health care facilities, medical supplies are not readily available, and living in highly crowded communal situations exacerbates the risk of spread. Moreover, the international community which normally offers aid is hard pressed to help because every nation is dealing with their own problems related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund positions Brooke USA to immediately help where the need is greatest. The current crisis has also impacted the US, leaving horses, donkeys, and mules abandoned and local equine organizations in desperate need of financial support.

Brooke USA Chairman of Board of Directors John Nicholson announced that “the organization has established a $125,000 goal with the understanding that this may change as communities are further impacted and the crisis continues.” He added that Brooke USA anticipates a surge in funding requests from its sister organization Brooke, the leading international charity focused on alleviating the suffering of working equines and the people they serve in the developing world, as well as from other organizations with similar missions. He noted that “we simply want to be ready to help immediately when asked or when we see the need.”

“We hope that equine-friendly businesses, individuals, and philanthropists will join us in this fight against this virus which certainly is global in scale,” said Emily Dulin, Executive Director of Brooke USA.

The funds raised will be used to support response and recovery efforts which will vary from nation to nation and community to community. Brooke USA understands that needs in each area will be individual. In some communities, this may mean providing care for working animals whose owners have been impacted by the pandemic. In others, it may involve helping get food to a family who can no longer work due to illness or economic distress.

To donate to Brooke USA’s COVID-19 Crisis Response & Recovery Fund, visit www.BrookeUSA.org/COVID-19Fund, or contact Emily Dulin at Emily.Dulin@BrookeUSA.org, or send a check or money order to Brooke USA, 2333 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, KY 40504.

Learn more about our response to COVID-19.

Happy Birthday Belle: Recovering Geriatric Colic Case Turns 34

Belle recovering at home in Vero Beach, FL. Photo courtesy of Jennifer Penn.

When Jennifer Penn learned that her horse Belle was in the beginning stages of a bout with colic in February, she knew she was not ready to say goodbye to her beloved horse. The 33-year-old American Quarter Horse named Wagners Mint Joker, but known to Penn and her family as Belle, was the horse of a lifetime.

Penn’s mother, Becky Seton, and late grandfather, Bob Lowery, both of Vero Beach, FL, purchased a then 12-year-old Belle for Penn in 1998. “We were both 12 years old and it was a match made in heaven,” recalled Penn. “I had outgrown my show pony, so it was time to look for an all-around horse that I could show and have fun with. I am an only child, so she is like a sister to me. As I grew up, I experienced life right alongside her.”

Belle quickly lived up to her reputation as an all-around horse, actively competing with Penn at AQHA breed shows, open and 4-H circuits throughout Florida, show jumping events, and excelling in western trail competitions. Belle even pulled a cart for a time.

When Penn was 18, she started her own lesson program with Belle as her equine partner. “Belle provided a solid foundation for many riders, both young and old,” she said. “She not only taught me how to become a horsewoman, but she has also impacted so many young people’s lives and taught them showmanship skills. She’s special to me and my mother Becky, but also to so many people who have gone on to become very successful horsemen and horsewomen.”

Belle was partially retired in 2018, and was the guest of honor at Penn’s wedding the same year. The mare gave her last lesson about six months ago. She was still being ridden once a week with the occasional trail or pony ride for yet another up-and-coming rider.

Belle was thriving until colic threatened to disrupt her retirement.

On Saturday morning, February 1, Belle had not been drinking from her water buckets, did not finish her breakfast, and had only passed manure twice throughout the night before. Penn took these abnormal behaviors very seriously. “She’s tough as nails, so she was not showing any signs of discomfort; she was just standing there quietly in her stall. By knowing her habits we were able to identify a problem and make early decisions.”

Belle was initially treated by her primary veterinarian, Dr. Kelly Alderman of Alderman Veterinary Services based in Fellsmere, FL. Based on Dr. Alderman’s recommendation, Belle was transported to Dr. Karie Vander Werf’s Treasure Coast Equine Emergency Services in Palm City, FL, where an ultrasound on Sunday showed an impaction in the large intestines and displacement of the small intestines.

“It was very obvious to us that if we were going to consider surgery, we would have to do it sooner rather than later,” said Penn. “The decision was made to preserve her strength and transport her to Palm Beach Equine Clinic for Dr. Weston Davis to operate on her.

“It was because of his confidence in the surgery despite her age, that I was at peace with the decision to proceed with surgery,” continued Penn.

One of three board-certified surgeons at Palm Beach Equine Clinic, Dr. Weston Davis performed the emergency colic surgery to remove a right dorsal impaction in the large colon and correct a severe displacement caused by altered motility within the intestines.

“Her primary veterinarian had done everything that she could medically do for the horse before referring the case to Palm Beach Equine Clinic,” said Dr. Davis. “In some colic cases, a prolonged course of medical treatments might result in the horse no longer being a surgical candidate. When things were not improving quickly enough, the horse was sent to us. Our main concern was to determine if Belle was as healthy a surgical candidate as she could possibly be.”

According to Dr. Davis, Belle’s physical examination and blood work revealed her to be a very healthy, albeit geriatric, colic case. “She is the oldest horse that I have performed colic surgery on. At the time of her arrival, Belle was well-hydrated with balanced electrolytes levels and stable organ systems. She was an overall good candidate for colic surgery, even at 33 years old,” he said.

While not every geriatric colic case is well-suited for surgical intervention, Dr. Davis considers two factors before moving forward with any surgery. “The surgery has to make sense for the horse, meaning that they are a healthy candidate with the ability to recover, and they have the will to live,” said Dr. Davis, who noticed how resilient Belle was from the moment he saw her. “The other point is that the surgery needs to be financially reasonable for the client. In Belle’s case, there was a will to live, and a strong emotional connection with this horse.”

After a successful colic surgery, Belle was moved to the Palm Beach Equine Clinic Hospital for recovery where she was cared for round-the-clock by Dr. Candelaria Chunco and hospital staff.

“Dr. Davis and Dr. Chunco were fantastic,” said Penn. “They were both so kind, and I received regular text updates. I knew that they were invested in her recovery. When she stood up after anesthesia, I remember Dr. Davis saying to me, ‘this horse is a badass,’ and she really is!”

Belle returned home to Vero Beach on February 19, and celebrated her 34th birthday on March 27. “Her recovery was slow, but she is doing well, regaining an appetite, working her way back to regular turnout, and starting to act like her old self again,” said Penn. “She is an incredibly special horse to not only me and my mother, but to my husband, family, friends, and the horse community here. It’s so wonderful to have her back home.”

Palm Beach Equine Clinic continues to stay up to date on COVID-19 developments and will update our clients, partners and fellow equestrians as the situation progresses. Contact Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599 for questions or to speak with a veterinarian.

Palm Beach Equine Clinic
www.EquineClinic.com
561-793-1599

Hats Off to the Horses 2020 Continues with the Slim Shadey Chapeau

Dagmar Steiner and Slim Shadey at Old Friends (Photo: Laura Battles)

GEORGETOWN, KY – APRIL 3, 2020 –  The annual “Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby” online fashion auction continues this week with a new Derby-style chapeau going on the virtual block to raise money for Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY.

This is the 11th consecutive year that Old Friends has joined with acclaimed milliner Sally Faith Steinmann of the Massachusetts-based Maggie Mae Designs® to auction off four handcrafted Derby hats between January and April, each inspired by one of the non-profit organization’s 200-plus retired racehorses. To date this online fundraiser has garnered nearly $40,000 for Old Friends.

This new hat was inspired by graded stakes winner Slim Shadey, and it is showcased here by equine artist Dagmar Galleithner-Steiner.

The hat will be up for bid for 10 days only from 8 pm (EST) April 1st through 8 pm (EST) on April 11th. Interested bidders can go to the Old Friends website at www.oldfriendsequine.org and follow the link, or CLICK HERE to visit our eBay page.

To read more and to view additional images of the hat, CLICK HERE.

About the Horse

A two-time graded-stakes winner, Slim Shadey — by 2001 Breeders’ Cup Mile winner Val Royal (FR) out of the Chief’s Crown mare Vino Veritas — was bred in Great Britain by Phil Cunningham and spent two seasons racing throughout England and Ireland. He made his U.S. debut for Cunningham and trainer Simon Callaghan in 2012 at Santa Anita, kicking off what was to become his banner season.

In February of 2012 Slim captured his first graded stakes, the Grade 2 San Marco at Santa Anita (a race he would capture again in 2013). Then, in September, Slim took the top spot in the Grade 2 John Henry Turf Championship, which served as a stepping stone to a run in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Turf where he finished 8th (a few lengths behind the winner, Old Friends retiree Little Mike). By 2014, the now 6-year-old Slim began a series of claims. In 2018 Slim was claimed by owner Michael Hui for trainer Mike Maker.  After a series of unsuccessful starts for his new connections, the time finally came for Slim to hang up his racing plates.

About the Hat

Since Slim raced for several different stables Steinmann used a combination of his pink, black, and white silks for the trimmings of this stunning Derby hat.

A large foundation was created using a base layer of soft pink dupioni silk. The brim was then trimmed with a single layer of pink silk organza ruffle, which allows the light to pass through the sheer fabric. A fancy black braiding was top stitched where the silk layer meets the brim edge. To further showcase racing silk colors, a large rose curl, created out of alternating layers of pink dupioni silk and white silk organza, adorns the front of the hat.

For the final touches, a medley of black and white silk organza “feathers” were added, a black satin sash encircles the crown, and a black pebble button edged in gold adorns the sash in the back.

The hat is stunning from every angle and measures approximately 21 inches end to end. The lining for the “Slim Shadey” was done is a soft pink satin to coordinate with the floral trim.

As a physical remembrance, several strands of Slim’s tail hair have been braided and woven into the trim.

Our thanks go out to artist Dagmar Steiner for helping with this year’s “Hats Off to the Horses” and also to Old Friends volunteer and photographer Laura Battles for her stunning images.

Bidding on the “Slim Shadey is open now.

For more information about Old Friends, see their website at www.oldfriendsequine.org or call the farm at (502) 863-1775.

Maggie Mae Designs® Custom Millinery offers magnificent hats for all occasions, from glamorous racing events such as the Kentucky Derby and the Royal Ascot to stunning bridal wear and handsome cocktail fashions. Every hat is carefully handcrafted by milliner Sally Faith Steinmann from her home base in South Harwich, MA. Salons of her fashions can be seen on her website at www.maggiemaedesigns.com.

MEDIA CONTACT: Cynthia Grisolia, (347) 423-7322, cindy@oldfriendsequine.org; Maggie Mae Designs (508) 430-1626, sally@maggiemae.com

Old Friends Debuts Virtual Tours

GEORGETOWN, KY – MARCH 30 2020 –  Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Kentucky, debuted the first in a series of Virtual Farm Tours that will enable fans to continue to access the non-profit organization’s 100-plus equine retirees at its Georgetown location during the COVID-19 quarantine.

The series, dubbed “Monday Mornings with Michael”, is hosted by Old Friends founder Michael Blowen and will offer short visits with a few equine retirees each week. They will be posted on Old Friends social media platforms on Monday mornings and will also be available via their website and YouTube channel.

The first video showcases Old Friends’ oldest retires, multiple stakes winner Dinard, who is 32, and one-time claimer Archie’s Echo, who is 31.

You can see it on YouTube by CLICKING HERE.

For more information, visit www.oldfriendsequine.org.

MEDIA CONTACT: Cynthia Grisolia, (502) 863-1775, cindy@oldfriendsequine.org; or Barbara Fossum, (502) 863-1775, barbara@oldfriendsequine.org