KBR Wild Horse and Burro News
  Making the best of a bad situation
April, 2004
A Horse in the House!
Nap time!
It was a wild horse adoption program's worst nightmare.

One pregnant mare, aggressively protecting her foal's space, kicked at another pregnant mare. Kicks are common among wild horses but in this case the heavily laden target couldn't move fast enough in close quarters and took a direct hit in the leg, suffering a complete break; an unrecoverable injury. The mare had to be euthanized but the volunteers decided to try to remove and save the foal, and save the foal they did.

Named Kobyashi Maru after Star Trek's impossible scenario, this fairly large baby horse had a shaky start. He was so depressed from his dam's anesthesia that he had to be resuscitated for some time before he could breathe on his own. Volunteers had to find mare colostrum in order to get little Koby's immune syustem started. Then other supplies were quickly needed to produce large quantities of a special blend of goat's milk, powdered mare's milk replacment, vitamins and digestive bacteria. But as is usually the case, Lyon County's intrepid volunteers came through and little Koby drank his formula ... like a horse!

With his immunity somewhat compromised it was not a good idea to put Koby out with the other horses. Therefore he stayed in Dayton resident Shirley Allen's back yard during the day, and in her house at night.

"Having a baby horse in the house has its challenges," Allen commented. "He wakes up every two hours, day and night, wanting to eat. I soon learned that if I didn't get up quickly enough when he whinnied for his midnight snack, he'd make a leap and we'd have a horse in the middle of the bed!

"On the plus side," Allen continues, "he does help with the chores. He follows me everywhere so I let him carry his own laundry."

Outside, Koby is right at home with the Allens' three dogs and two cats. He has his favorite napping places and likes to leap off a short rock wall that separates a terraced planter from the main yard.

Ocasionally Koby gets to roam outside the yard and investigate the sagebrush covered property. "He sure likes to explore," explained Bruce Allen, Shirley's husband. "We've nicknamed him 'Nemo' (after the young fish in the movie) because it takes a couple of us to keep track of him."

Stagecoach resident Willis Lamm and President of LRTC, the adoption group responsible for these animals, is amazed at the little horse's progress. "This was a real long shot but the volunteers wanted to give it a try. Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue in Lancaster, CA, offered to cover the big expenses. So we went for it and it has been an incredible experience. Shirley and her corps of volunteer 'nurses' have done an outstanding job. Now we just have to teach the little guy to be a horse!"

The adoption group has no worries about placing the little horse. There is already a list formed of volunteers who want to keep him. "This little guy isn't the only horse in town needing a home," Allen pointed out. "We have several other nice mares and foals that need good homes."

Hanging out in the overstuffed chair
Shirley Allen and Koby
Carrying his share of the laundry
Helping prepare lunch

Little Koby's progress can be followed on the internet at:

Another horse in the house? Several, actually, over the years.
A particularly interesting account involves a foal named Heidi

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