In 2013, Cindy Prince was attending law school, preparing for exams and getting ready to go pick up Kirby, an Arabian gelding who had lost his eye in a trailer accident after being saved from a kill buyer. On the eve of his pick-up, Cindy dislocated her kneecap but arrived on crutches in a leg immobilizer to take Kirby home, he’d made it this far and she wouldn’t let him down. However, not long after, Cindy was diagnosed with cancer and her life came crashing down around her.
Throughout the devastating effects of her treatment, she longed to be with Kirby. Her quirky, goofy, affectionate rescue horse seemed to understand in a way that no one else did. She realized that she didn’t care about her career or the myriad things that had seemed so important before. Kirby had changed her way of thinking; she wanted to spend her time in the barn helping other horses through the worst times of their lives, just as Kirby had done for her. In 2014, Cindy finished her treatment and Pony Tales Refuge & Rehab was officially born.
PTRR takes in all breeds, ages and genders of ponies, donkeys and horses regardless of their state. “We have taken in and rehabilitated emaciated, orphaned, abandoned, abused and unwanted horses from owner surrenders and law enforcement seizures. We also specialize in nurse mare orphan foals,” says Cindy.
After a veterinary evaluation, special needs horses are placed on a rehabilitation program based on their individual needs and all refeeding is done following the UC Davies program. Once they are rehabilitated, horses are evaluated for training. Training is a fun experience for everyone at PTRR, horses and volunteers alike. Volunteer trainers take on the horses that only need a quick training refresher. The rescue also runs a "Trainer's Challenge" where trainers compete for prizes with the ultimate goal of making the horses ready for their new homes.
PTRR also puts in an immense amount of work with the nurse mare orphan foals in their program. “We partner with the Kentucky Humane Association Equine CARE and take in several orphan foals each spring. These foals need round the clock care and feeding in order to survive without their mothers,” says Cindy. Regardless of their beginnings, PTRR wants these foals to grow up never knowing a day without love, care and compassion.
In the three short years since PTRR’s founding, they have rehabilitated, trained and found loving homes for 65 horses, ponies and donkeys. While proud of this number, the staff at PTRR have no intention of slowing down. Through the help and support of donors they are hoping to build a larger barn to “take in more special needs horses, allow more volunteers and youth groups to visit and provide more one-on-one interaction between humans and horses,” says Cindy.
The photo shown above is a photo of Kirby. Please consider becoming a "Kirby Crusader and donate or sponsor a horse in his memory.
Please use the information below to learn more about PTRR and donate to help make these dreams come true.
Pony Tales Refuge & Rehab, Inc.
If you are interested in loaning or donating your horse trailer to this particular organization, then check out details of our Horse Trailer Donation and Sharing Program here. Then, post your comments below to help out!
Also, learn more about horse rescues in these two articles: