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Article published August 2, 2013
Valerie Druschel Slippery Rock
I have been following the situation between horse owners and the Equine Angels Rescue in the Butler Eagle, not knowing what really to believe. It wasn’t until the last rescue of the Missouri fox trotters that I was motivated to find out for myself what is the truth. One late afternoon about 10 days after these horses were taken there, I made an unannounced visit to the Equine Angels facility. Volunteers greeted me with smiles as they were cleaning stalls and moving hay. I met briefly with director Pam Vivirito and asked if I could just walk around to see the facility, but I specifically asked to see the fox trotters. I took my time and stopped to visit each one of the horses. I was saddened and my heart sank as I saw their sunken-in bodies. These horses were visibly weak and malnourished. Ribs, hips and backbones were clearly visible. Some mares had foals that were still dependent on them for nourishment, as well. Clearly, the condition of these horses did not deteriorate overnight. I asked myself how could anyone let this go on? For me, I found the truth that day. The evidence of neglect was right in front of me. As far as the horse owner filing a lawsuit against Equine Angels Rescue, accusing them of harming reputations to get publicity for generating donations, I think not. If anyone has harmed this horse owner’s reputation, she has already done that on her own. Most of all, I do hope people can work together for the betterment of these horses. They seem to be the only ones without a voice.