March 2017 Rescue of Belle
ASHA has adopted two beautiful Selles Francais horses (mother and son) as the elderly owner was no longer able to care for them.
The two horses have never been separated and have not been handled very much. They were first placed with a family who gave them good food and care and they were returned to health and their weight improved.
Now they are at Cantemerle they are learning to trust people, and the ASHA care team is educating them so that they become easier to handle and more confident around humans.
Ideally ASHA would look for an adopter to take them together and give them a Forever Home, but we realise that this may not be possible. They haven’t been handled for a very long time and they were almost living wild in a large field with plenty of grass and water. Consequently they are not used to basic handling like grooming, cleaning feet and putting on headcollars and the care team is working with them to get them used to being with people.
We have started to make progress with separating the mother and son. Belle, the mum, is enjoying having a little time to herself. She is being groomed and learning that life without her big baby can be peaceful.
Cabriole, the son, is also starting to enjoy his interaction with people, and his inquisitive nature means that he likes learning and seeing new things. He is nicknamed Cabbie and is gaining confidence daily.
We still work only on very short sessions several times a day, so that they are not apart too long and they go back to each other when all is calm.
Belle is 25 and Cabriole is 16 years old and they are both inoculated and microchipped.
Belle with Helen Belle with Cabbie, her son
Belle has been adopted
Four of us got together to adopt Belle. She had lived in lonely isolation with her son for years, but her owner became unable to look after them and they were passed into ASHA’s care. How she came by a dent in her forehead is something we will never know, but this might explain the issues she has with trust. Belle is a beautiful bay mare of 25 years who arrived with her son Cabby (17), from whom she had never been separated since his birth. Belle was reluctant to give us her trust at first, but soon began to respond to gentle handling and kindness. Separation work with the pair began little by little, day by day, over the months, and they now live apart, but see each other and get to spend a little time together quite often.
Belle has gained strength and fitness and now seems very happy living with a group of mares. She is brought up to the yard often, and last time I took her back to her field she cantered back to her friends, popping over some bramble bushes on the way! Belle has been ridden a couple of times and today a group of us, including Belle and Cabby, went out on a short ride together which everyone enjoyed. Before I returned Belle to her field she stopped briefly in the yard to say “bye for now” to her son. She’s not the kind of gal to wear her heart on her sleeve, but a relationship with her is worth working for.
Belle happily settled at Cantemerle