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Horse put down after rescue

Robert Moody, veterinarian, treats a leg injury on a 3-year-old Appaloosa horse rescued Saturday in Clinton.  - Submitted photo
Robert Moody, veterinarian, treats a leg injury on a 3-year-old Appaloosa horse rescued Saturday in Clinton.
— image credit: Submitted photo

A 24-year-old Clinton woman may face animal cruelty charges for allegedly neglecting her horse, a 3-year-old Appaloosa stallion.

The horse was seized Saturday afternoon by Island County Animal Control Officer Carol Barnes from a residence on Heggenes Road in Clinton.

Veterinarian Robert Moody attempted to save the horse’s life, but it was euthanized Sunday due to the severity of its condition.

“The horse was undernourished and was suffering from a severe leg injury, one of the worst leg injuries I’ve ever seen,” Barnes said.

Barnes was alerted of the horse’s condition by an anonymous tip. She contacted the owner prior to seizing the animal and urged the woman to seek veterinary care for the horse.

“When she didn’t comply, a search warrant was issued by Island County Superior Court Judge Vickie Churchill to seize the animal in an attempt to rescue it,” Barnes said.

The horse, named Blue, was taken to an undisclosed location where Moody treated the horse. It was too late.

“The horse’s hoof fell off as a result of vascular compromise,”

Moody said. “It was a very severe injury. You can’t have a three-legged horse.”

Moody said he could not tell how old the wound was or what caused the injury.

Barnes said it was between 200 and 250 pounds underweight.

“A horse that size should weigh 1,100 pounds,” Moody said.

Moody said the horse’s owner did not understand the severity of its injury.

“They needed to seek veterinary assistance for the animal,” he said.

According to Barnes, the owner had told her previously that the injury was as a result of a rope burn. Barnes said she was told that before the horse was moved to Heggenes Road. Earlier, it had been staked in the woods in Freeland.

Barnes had help with the horse’s rescue.

“Grain and stall shavings were donated by Cenex in Freeland. People pledged funds to help defray medical costs, and Dr. Moody worked many hours in an attempt to save the horse’s life,” she said.

“After 24 hours of attempting to save Blue’s life, we were saddened when he had to be euthanized. Blue had so much potential,” Barnes said.

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