Part 14 – They Shoot Horses Don’t They?

I was about to experience my worst fear regarding Magnum…..

I noticed one day he was limping – ok – not to worry – maybe he just hurt his leg and would be fine.  Over a few days the limping got worse and it seemed to be his offside hind.  I was getting nervous…

He was still coming up for his food – but where previously he would try and rush to Ducati’s food if I wasn’t nearby – he was staying at his own bucket.  Ducati soon caught on to the fact that he had the upper hand – and   I had to stand there and make sure Magnum had a fair go.

As the days went on, he got worse – and it got to the point where he stayed under the tree – that’s the Magic Tree down in the bottom paddock.   I was then taking down food and water to him.

I couldn’t stand seeing him in pain –  and I rang every vet in the district asking for help, and telling the story about the untouchable horse.  Sadly, I got the same answer… if I couldn’t get him in a pen, they couldn’t help.  I asked whether they had a tranquilizer gun – no……. they didn’t ……..

I felt sick – for a start – we had no type of secure pen.  I guess I could have bought some panels –  but how do I get him in there?  Sure, he wasn’t moving out of choice.  But if he was fearful, he would be off.  Even if he was in a pen – the vet still wouldn’t be able to tend to him – they would be killed!

I would need something like a cattle crush – and then I would need to get him in there.  I couldn’t see how I could do it.

The vets had another suggestion – if he was in that much pain I would have to have him shot……….  SHOT!!!!……

I remember trying to hold back tears on the phone.  Had it come to this???

I asked if any vets do that – no – I would have to find someone…..

Okay – deep breaths…… I couldn’t have him suffer – if this is what I had to do to end his suffering, I would have to do it.  I told myself it would be quick and painless….

The next day Magnum was still under the tree – still much the same.  I rang someone who did such a thing – he had a gun licence and would often be called on to put animals down – mainly cattle who were in distress.  Let’s call him Kevin..

Kevin came out the next day  and I took him down to the tree.  We approached carefully – but Magnum hobbled away.  We stood at a distance Magnum was comfortable with.  Kevin spent a long time looking at him – and of course commented on what a stunning horse he was.


I told him the story of Magnum, and said I couldn’t let him suffer.  He was watching him carefully.  He said to me “You know I won’t be able to do it with one clean shot.  He will run – so it will be a shot to bring him down – then another in the head.”

I felt faint  “Yes” I said.  “I know he will run – but is there any other option?”  “No” said Kevin – BUT  – give him a few days… let’s give him a chance to get better.  He’s too nice a horse to put down”.  Phew!!  I agreed with relief!

I continued taking food and water to Magnum – but over the next few days he started to move more!!!  And before too long he was back to his old self!!!  I would say it was a very painful hoof abscess.

Oh the relief!!!!  He was okay!!!  The shock of the possible shooting sent me to bed for two days.  I was so traumatised.  I kept picturing him running, being shot, and trying to struggle on injured.  I must never let that situation happen again.  I had to find a way to handle him….

But what was I to do??

At that point I had no idea….








Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s