In the past few weeks one of our donkey welfare advisers, Jane Bruce was working routinely in the Galway region when she noticed a field of welfare-compromised horses. Experience in the field has taught our welfare advisers that where horse welfare issues exist there is normally a donkey or two involved.
Jane kept a sharp eye out as she crossed the expansive bog field. Still, she was shocked when she came across a little donkey foal stuck in a deep section of bog. The foal’s body was trembling from the cold water. The donkey was clearly in difficulty and distress. It was impossible to know how long she had been there, waiting for help. Lonely, afraid, hungry and cold, she had been abandoned to the elements and an impending fate.
Without hesitation, Jane quickly made some calls for help. Time was of the essence to get the foal out of the bog. Without knowing how long she had been stuck there, it was impossible to know how long she would continue to survive in the water.
Two Gardai quickly arrived to help. Jane managed with some difficulty to get a head collar on the foal. The Gardai pulled and Jane pushed. Together, they managed to heave the foal out of the bog and onto the bank. All three then gently lifted her limp algae-covered body to her feet. The foal was completely
exhausted after her ordeal and could not stop trembling.
Equine charity Forgotten Horses Ireland arrived with a trailer and the little foal was lifted into the trailer with support straps to aid her weak body. There was no time to be lost and the foal was taken straight to a local vet where she was treated for hypothermia and shock. The vet examined the foal and concluded that she was very lucky that we had found her in time. That day Jane left the veterinary practice knowing that the foal was in the best of hands and we had done everything that we could for her.
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A few days later the foal was named Roma. She has been collected from Forgotten Horses Ireland and is now settling in to The Donkey Sanctuary in Liscarroll, Co. Cork.
Thanks to An Garda Síochána, Hungry Horse Outside and Forgotten Horses Ireland for such professional collaboration in the rescue of Roma. The horses initially spotted are being monitored by two equine charities.