IMPORTANT! Every horse most often needs several sponsors to fully fund their care averaging $300 per month at Dove Creek Equine Rescue, so choose any horse you wish or send us a quick email and ask us which horse needs more sponsors!
Thank you for giving them a second chance!
Phillip Shipley, Amarillo, TX and Kathy Reeves, Pampa, TX
Angel is a 15 (2003) year old dark bay Thouroughbred mare. Registered with the Jockey Club, she came to the rescue in 2009 from another rescue when Laurie was privately taking in rescue horses at her ranch. Angel had mental and emotional problems and did not want to be touched by humans. It was heart-wrenching to see her fear and terror when we tried to work with getting a halter on and off of her. After several years spending time in the herd, Angel has come around in many ways. A greatly respected trainer and a friend told Laurie that Angel would probably not be safe under saddle, based on the work he did with her, and recommended to let her roam with the herd and "just be a horse." Now, and to our delight, she allows volunteers to groom her. A beautiful horse, with a tormented past, Angel has depth in her eyes. If you slow down and listen to her soft breath upon which her ghost story rests, you might tune into the deeper currents that lie within...tuning into the whispers of Spirit. Whatever happened to Angel before she arrived at Dove Creek, we will never know. What we have been able to offer has been a place to heal and soothe the wounds of her soul. Watching her run with the herd is a site that brings tears to our eyes and a smile within our heart as we get to experience her true beauty and essence, her ability to run free. We are grateful she was able to find us, thus allowing us the opportunity to witness her healing, listening to her needs, a real compromise in today's world.
SPONSORED BY Charlene Seale, Amarillo, TX and Shelly Winston, Montrose, CO
Apache is a 5-year-old black gelding with a kind and gentle personality who came from another rescue near Canton, TX in May 2018. She came in with another compromised mare - who did not make it. Always a heart breaking situation, especially because Apache was so connected to "Dory". They were both previously neglected and malnourished as colts which is what landed them in a rescue, but also created various medical issues - primarily a severe tooth abscess for Apache. We had it pulled and he is now in rehab, being treated on a daily basis by Dove Creek Staff. Although tooth issues can be a slow recovery, Apache is improving daily, receiving lots of attention from the volunteers and staff at Dove Creek. He gets a second chance at a new life full of health and promise for a bright future, coming from challenging and heart wrenching circumstances.
UPDATE: Apache’s tooth and jaw issue have healed and he is on his way to a better life. He is now in the herd - learning social skills and roaming on the grassy plains and canyon lands. Soon he will enter the training program. This is a horse who has come from the trenches, gained his weight back and is now running with the big boys! Stay tuned on this guy.
SPONSORED BY: Peyton and Jenny Bivins, Amarillo, TX
Bentley is a 15-year-old Appendix QH gelding with an impressive show record. He competed at the national level in AQHA shows for many years in english, winning several major titles. Bentley came to the ranch 2 years ago as an owner surrender - a generous action by his owners to allow him to be a horse in a herd roaming 500 acres. Not only is he immensely talented in his discipline AND beautiful to behold, Bentley has a huge heart which is evident by the way he comes up to meet people, a true desire to connect with humans. He now enjoys being a herd member as well as working with people in the Volunteer program, and as of recent, the newly formed Equine Healing program for people. True to his name, he is a "high caliber" guy and has stolen many hearts. Because of his compassionate spirit and willingness to share it, he is a big asset to our programs. We are grateful to the Bivins family and their decision to surrender Bentley to Dove Creek.
SPONSORED BY By Karen Mills, Canyon, TX
His story, from Billy's owner:
"We purchased Billy in 2003 as a 3 yr. old. We had a friend who ranched in the panhandle. In addition to running cattle, he was in partnership with a man who bred registered, cutting-line Quarter Horses. When the breeder's foals came of training age, he sent them to our friend who trained and sold them for the breeder. Billy was one that our friend trained. He sold Billy to a 'cowboy' who worked on a feedlot, with the agreement the cowboy would make monthly payments on Billy. After several months, the cowboy stopped paying, so our friend drove to the feedlot to speak with him. The cowboy wasn't there that day but our friend asked where Billy was and went to the pen to look at him. He was in such bad condition that our friend loaded him immediately and took him home. He had been nursing Billy back to health when we contacted him to see if he had a good horse for our daughter to learn to ride on. He told us about Billy. He said it would take him several more months to get Billy to where he was in good enough condition to sell again as a working horse. So he agreed to sell Billy to us for very little money.
Billy looked bad when we got him. He was thin (even though he had gained weight), full of open saddle sores and had an enlarged, painful knee. We gave him lots of TLC, and he gradually changed from an almost depressed personality to a friendly, happy personality. He had a large pasture to run in and another horse as company. Billy was quiet and gentle with our daughter and loved the attention we all gave him. He regained condition and his back and knee healed fine. He continued to be a good horse for our daughter. She road Billy for 13 years until she went to college.
Billy's greatest talent was pulling sleds for my daughter and friends after a good snowfall. I rode him and dallied one end of a rope around the horn, while the child held a handle on the other end of the rope, sitting on the sled. Billy cantered out in perfect steadiness and self-control. He more than earned his keep in giving those kids much laughter!
We loved Billy for his curious sort of affection. If we were doing anything in the pasture (other than trying to catch him for a ride...and in that case, he loved the hard-to-get game)...Billy would follow us and sniff us and bump us and have to be smack in the middle of what we were doing. If he was in a 'catching' mood and we caught him in the pasture to walk him to the barn to be saddled for a ride......during the walk to the barn, he spent the entire time with his nose against our backs, nibbling and pulling at our shirts, bumping us with his nose and watching us stumble forward, even giving our backs a playful nip. He didn't bite. He knew the difference. He just enjoyed the interaction. And we often wondered if this behavior was due to his 'cutting' breeding.....that maybe he was trying to herd us. :)
Another antic of Billy's was to rub his bottom (with much enthusiasm) on the water pump handle and pipe that was attached to the water trough in the pasture. He really had no choice in that we had no trees. One day the inevitable happened and the pipe snapped creating a magnificent waterfall. He found this fascinating but we, of course, were panicked! Billy really loved water. On hot summer days, we always hosed the horses down to cool them off....andBilly forever tried to figure out how to drink right from the mouth of the hose itself.
With our daughter moving away and our intentions of selling our property, we asked for a place for Billy at Dove Creek. Billy had a front foot that turned inward and gradually worsened as he aged, even with good shoeing. This and other arthritis issues made pain a constant management issue for Billy. We did not want to sell him or give him away, not knowing if he would be taken care of properly. We are HUGELY grateful to Laurie and Dove Creek for taking and keeping and loving Billy!! We miss him!"
SPONSORED BY Ava McGrath, Vista, CA and Cathy McClendon, Amarillo, TX , and COOLHORSE of Amarillo, TX.
Charlie Brown is a 18 yo QH gelding with an amazing story of perseverance. In 2012 he was seized with 2 other horses in Randall county in the most severe abuse case to date at Dove Creek. Charlie Brown and Charger survived and the other gelding did not. The staff and volunteers were all heartbroken and angry at such negligence. It was touch and go for several weeks, everyone at the ranch hoping they had the strength to pull through severe malnutrition and trauma. Slowly, and with a careful feeding regimen, Charlie Brown and Charger both regained their weight and Charlie Brown began to show signs of his unique personality. What also showed up was a condition called “string halt” where his back legs have a hitch in them when he walks, but at a trot or gallop it isn’t evident.
The tenacity of this guy really is moving, especially if you look at him now- what a good lookin fella! He is often seen playing around and being his mischievous self with his buddies in the herd. He definitely feels “at home” in the sanctuary, where we made a decision to place him since he had such a traumatic journey along with his issue with string halt. Charlie also has a unique look with his curved ear - a result of rambunctiousness with another herd member and a trip to the vet to have it attached back! But all in all, it goes hand in hand with his personality and flair for play.
SPONSORED BY: Teresa Torres, Amarillo, TX and Christy Milton - Tracer Consulting, Amarillo, TX
Cisco is an 12-year-old QH flea bitten gray gelding. At 14-2 hands high, he was surrendered in February 2017 from a family in Plainview along with El Guapo. Cisco has adjusted quite well and had a girlfriend named Roxi who has been rehomed. Cisco came to Dove Creek with a diagnosis of navicular bone changes, and with proper shoeing and diet, he has done very well. He shows minor issues with his navicular but enjoys roaming with the herd. Cisco is a regular in the volunteer program and is used to teach new volunteers how to handle a horse and groom. He loves all the attention from volunteers. We photograph him frequently because of his stunning looks!