Blizzard is a sweet horse who seeks affection from his handlers. Remarkable, considering how humans have treated him in the past.
This 20-year-old gray gelding thoroughbred’s body condition when he was found was rated at 2 on a scale of 1-9, falling into the category of severely emaciated.
The Ulster County SPCA seized Blizzard along with 15 other horses from a Plattekill horse-boarding property in April. They were found in waste without drinking water. They fought over the water rescuers brought them.
“The horses were crowded,” said UCSPCA Executive Director Adam Saunders, “so most of them were fighting over what grain was there, and they sustained injuries and bite marks, but nothing severe. Most were emaciated and dehydrated from lack of water.”
“Blizzard is the only one still in need of constant medical attention,” Saunders said. “He’s the oldest and in the worst shape.”
Blizzard’s coat is in poor condition, suffering from hair loss and rain rot. Cataracts have taken most of his sight. He was long overdue to have his teeth filed down; it had become extremely difficult for him to chew, which partially accounted for his emaciated state.
After recent dental work, he is eating better and has put on some weight. He needs regular medicated baths to deal with the damage to his skin and coat and is on a special feed to help him gain weight.
“Given his blindness,” Saunders said, “he can’t be housed with other horses. It becomes hard for him to compete for food. He gets bullied out sometimes.”
Blizzard is available for adoption to an experienced handler. Seven other horses are also available for adoption. Some of the others have already been placed, and some may be reunited with their original owners.
The UCSPCA is in need of donations to cover the cost of caring for these horses.
“Just feeding a horse alone can run $300 a month,” said Saunders. “Rescues of this nature and size can run the UCSPCA in upwards of $25,000.”
Donations can be made at ucspca.org or mailed to the Ulster County SPCA, 20 Wiedy Road, Kingston 12401, or call 331-5377.