Born free on Valentine’s Day
Born free. How’s this for an amazing Valentine’s day story!?
A local Frt McDowell (FMD) reservation member finds a wet newborn foal on the side of frt McDowell rd and Magyoda drive early this morning, Valentines day 2020. The gentleman, (we want to try to find out his name), does the right thing and calls the Frt McDowell (FMD) reservation police. FMD Officer David Veith is sent on the call. He told us that he almost walked away, but returned when he saw coyotes approaching the helpless newborn. He sees that the foal is not getting up and recognizes that it is in deep trouble. He made the right call, and dialed our SRWHMG hotline for advice.
Volunteer Christine who answered, asks him if there is a band of horses in the near vicinity and there is! The kind officer then picks up the cold wet newborn and warms it up, while our president Simone dispatches our volunteers to the location as quickly as possible, because time is of the essence in these kinds of situations.
Volunteers Cris and Leeann arrive within 15 minutes, and check the foal for injuries. The filly is shivering, but seems healthy enough to attempt to reunite it. We are very familiar with this process as it is not uncommon for mares to run away right after the birthing process, if they are disturbed by something. Ofcourse, right at this point, we do not know who the mother is, but together with the officer, they take a guess and carry the foal towards the band of horses that is closest by. (There were several bands of horses watching.)
When they see a sign of interest from one of the horses, they put the filly down and back up carefully and get out of the way. The foal stands there for a minute alone. Then there is a loud piercing whinney from one of the adult horses. Everyone hides and holds their breath as the band approaches, will they harm the baby or accept it?
There is nuzzling, then there is a kick from the mare to the stallion, and then there it is; they witness the age old pure instinctive recognition of mom and baby. It is universal, and it is beautiful.
The happy nuzzling of the whole band to the foal and the foal wobbling over to drink her first precious colostrum,..we wish we had a film maker with us for these precious moments, but we don’t. The colostrum is the very important first mothers milk, which will give her the strength to survive.
Because everyone in this scenario responded so quickly, including Frt. McDowell dispatch, she received that colostrum in time for her to survive. The band starts to move off and she follows. From behind the bush, our volunteers monitor the happy family band for a while until we know for sure that there is no rejection.
This is the best ending we could hope for and we want to thank frt McDowell officer David Veith for being the hero of this story.
We are sure that as an officer he has saved many lives and probably more important ones, but we are thankful, because nomatter how small, each life matters and love prevails this Valentines day!
Officer Veith named the filly Maggy, because she was found right on the corner of Magyoda drive and frt McDowell rd. A last name of Valentine would be fitting, so please help us wish much luck to little Maggy Valentine!
We hope that if you ever spot Maggy Valentine, that you’ll let us know, how she is doing.
There is never a life too small to save.