Roxy was terrified of everything when she came but after a while, the only place fear seemed to cling to was in having her feet cleaned or trimmed. We had worked with her a lot, but she had a set back and the experience brought out an expression of PTSD as clear as any human being’s I had ever seen.
Her feet had to be done so, after another month of soothing and trust building, I asked my special farrier, Tom, to come and help with her.
It was an extremely windy day when he came to do her feet and gave her a sedative but she fought the relaxation. Animals can, by their will override these drugs, and we knew her will was strong considering at her rescue, she had to be shot 12 times with sedation to finally get close enough to halter her. I held her and spoke gently to her.
Tom picked up her left hind and though she struggled, he held her fast and was able to complete not one but both hind feet. We stood there together, Tom, Julie, Roxy and I. I rubbed Roxy all over her hind legs, her front legs and finally, removing her halter and lead rope and she moved away.
She walked down around the shelter and stood a couple minutes, then, much to our surprise, headed back toward us. She came first to me, head lowered and buried her head in my chest, as if she just wanted to be held. I stroked her and held her for a minute. She lifted her head and to our utter amazement walked to Tom, and buried her head in his chest. He too, stroked her, holding her, comforting her. Then, she walked over to his farrier equipment with her ears forward and with confident curiosity sniffed and nuzzled ……….
It is a privilege to help any creature find peace where there once was pain and fear.