2009 - Volume #33, Issue #2, Page #22[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
3-Legged Pony An Inspiration To All
The Louisiana Shetland pony survived a tree crashing through her stall during Hurricane Katrina and a severe pit bull attack three months later. Harris rescued Molly both times.
In the chaos after Katrina, Harris and her husband helped bring food to people for the first two weeks, then helped rescue animals the next three months. Early on, Molly was discovered trapped in her stall. The Harrises took Molly home to live with them.
They also rescued a pit bull and for some reason he turned on Molly and they found her with all four legs hamstrung and other deep gashes.
A veterinarian sewed Molly up, and the resilient pony healed quickly - except for the bottom portion of her right front leg. It never infected; circulation was cut off and the flesh just died. Molly adapted and got around on three legs.
One day, when Harris changed the bandage, the hoof detached, held only by a couple strands. Molly leaped back in pain, but was careful not to hurt Harris.
"I got this picture that she wanted to survive," Harris says. "She was a smart girl. She knew how to walk on three legs."
Harris started an Internet search and found a Florida company that makes prosthetics for horses. In 2006, surgeons removed Molly's lower leg and put on a cast with an acrylic hoof at the bottom. When Molly woke in her stall, she stood up and walked immediately.
Soon after, Molly made a visit to the Children's Hospital in New Orleans and Harris realized she had a calling. Molly has perfect manners as children and adults crowd around her.
Molly inspires kids and adults alike.
Molly loves her "job," Harris says, and she receives requests from all over the country to take Molly to various venues - including soldiers returning from the war.
Harris doesn't have the means to travel very far from home with Molly. She hopes to change that, and has set up a foundation - Kids and Ponies - and is seeking sponsorship for a truck and trailer, custom designed to accommodate Molly. Though Molly is 19, she is in good health - she even gallops when she wants to - and Shetland ponies can live well into their 30's. "Molly is special," Harris says. "Not every horse is a candidate for this kind of work."
Find out more about Molly on her website and by checking out the video on (www.you tube.com/watch ?v= DkeL gX ocwa).
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Kaye Harris, Kids and Ponies - Molly's Foundation, 156 Bertucci Lane, St. Rose, Louisiana 70087 (ph 504 610-1943; kidsandponies-molly@hotmail. com; www.mollythepony.com).
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