Molly the Mule
In addition to managing the 50 to 60 horses under our daily care, we have been busy this year helping owners out with some tricky situations. We appreciate it when owners reach out for help but are still willing to care for their animals.
Over the last week we have been able to help temporarily hold a horse when an owner was locked off a property, gone out to help make a plan to scale back a breeding situation and then today we helped catch and restrain a little feral mule for the veterinarian to remove a long wire caught on its hind foot.
Molly, an approximately 25-year-old, semi-blind mule, needed some extra help today. She has been wandering around a property with a halter hanging off her neck for at least 12 years because she would not let anyone touch her. Her original owner is now deceased and the person now in charge of her has been trying her best to care for her. Fortunately, she noticed the wire on Molly’s let right away.
Our staff was able to set up a sturdy round pen and then bait her and her 27-year-old mare friend inside. The two were then separated and an extra panel was added inside the round pen. Molly quickly took a liking to our trainer’s teenage daughter, following her around at a safe distance. Once Molly was calmly caught between two strong panels, she was smart enough to let us help her. The halter around her neck was removed and a new halter was put on for the procedure. Our veterinarian gave her a couple of intramuscular sedations to mellow Molly and then finally some IV drugs to get her to lay down. She was pretty good for all of this, although there was some serious foot-stomping going on to let us know she was not thrilled.
Once down, the wire was quickly removed, and the wound cleaned, her hooves and matted tail trimmed. Our crew then searched for and removed additional loose wire found in several sections of the pasture.
The reality is that we cannot just not take on all the animals that need some extra help. We will be going back out to help advise Molly’s owner on ways that she can better care for Molly and her mare friend. She may eventually want to try to find a good home for Molly, but it’s going to be hard to find one willing to put in the work on an older mule who is not thrilled about being touched. Keep your eyes peeled for a future volunteer fence building project. Molly and her buddy just might need it!