Surprise! Foal born at animal shelter
HUNTINGTON — When Courtney Proctor-Cross came to the Huntington Cabell Wayne Animal Shelter on Monday morning to pick up some kittens to take the vet, she noticed a smaller black figure in the pen with the horse that animal control seized on Friday.
“Is that a dog?” she thought.
But on closer look, Cross, executive director at the shelter, quickly realized it was not a dog, but a newborn horse.
“It had just happened because the placenta was wrapped around its legs and the umbilical cord was still attached,” she said. “The mare was licking it, fooling with it. Complete surprise.”
Animal control had seized the mare Friday evening after police stopped a man riding her downtown without the necessary permits and equipment. Scott Iseli, director of animal control, rode the mare back to the shelter Friday. Neither the owner nor Iseli realized the black beauty was pregnant.
It’s not the first time a horse has found its way to the animal shelter, but it is the first time one has given birth there, Cross said.
Now, as the court system works to decide the fate of the mare and her foal, the animal shelter is in control of caring for the pair, which will prove to be costly.
The mare is not producing enough milk at the moment to nourish the foal properly, so the shelter will need to supplement her. The foal also will require at least one, and possibly two, plasma infusions. The total cost of the foal’s vet care, provided by Equine Medical Center in Chesapeake, is estimated at $1,000.
The shelter is working to find a barn where the two can stay, away from the yapping of dogs.
Donations for the foal’s veterinary care can be made to the Western West Virginia Animal Rescue Alliance, which will provide the funds for care, on PayPal at firstname.lastname@example.org. Donations can also be mailed to 216 11th Ave. West, Huntington, WV 25701.