Every Friday we are featuring a GSH Permanent Resident - a horse who makes GSH their home. This #FridaysHorse is Hamilton.
Hamilton is our youngest permanent resident, at just five years old. He is a survivor of the ISPMB failure and one of the poster boys of that rescue - literally featured in all of the news articles that ran at the time, a cute foal with flat, curled up hooves. As one of the first organizations to go in and remove horses directly from ISPMB, before they became the Hallelujah Horses, we didn't realize Hamilton was that foal until he was home. We just took in his mother, identified by ISPMB as special needs, and he came along.
His mother ended up being sound and fine with some corrective trims. Hamilton, however, was not so lucky. Likely due to the lack of resources and minerals, and inbreeding, Hamilton failed to even develop the coffin bones in his hind feet. He has little nubs, and tiny rice-sized wing tips where they should have grown, but no bone. The coffin bone gives the hoof shape, direction, and support, meaning Hamilton's hooves just kind of do what they want.
As we faced the thought of euthanasia for him before he was even a year old, we were struck by his friendliness, personality, and will to live. So we sought out experts, if for no other reason than to ensure his story was told. We stumbled onto Dr. Ted Vlahos, a prosthetics and lameness expert, and he was willing to work with us. After x-rays, we received the good news that Hamilton could be kept sound and happy with special trims and shoes.
Four years later, Hamilton is finally approaching his adult height - currently 14.1 hands. Except for one massive growth spurt that caused pressure abscesses (his feet grew 2 sizes while in shoes!) he has remained strong and healthy. We are looking at potentially training him to drive once he has reached his full height and weight.
Hamilton's long-term sponsor did not renew his sponsorship this year, so he is looking for sponsorship. With his need for shoes, his monthly sponsorship is $150, or $1800 annually. $600 of that sponsorship goes directly to the hay fund. Sponsorships help provide stability to our permanent residents, and start at $10 per month. Who wants to sponsor this amazing boy? http://gentlespirithorses.org/donate