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Old Friends in the Stable: Dots
Old Friends in the Stable
Dots, is a 29-year-old former polo pony at the Ranger Foundation of Greenbriar Farm in Keedysville, Maryland. Appropriately named, the red spotted Appaloosa gelding retired to the farm in the fall of 2002 from Valley Forge Military Academy in Wayne, Pennsylvania. He ended a career as a high-goal pony who traveled far and wide.
He came to Valley Forge from Cornell University in 1997, from a previous home in Houston, Texas. Valley Forge barn manager noted that Dots was a hard worker in his job as a polo pony, and that he acquired the nickname 'Boris Becker' after the red-haired temperamental tennis player.
Blind in one eye and extremely sensitive to movements around him, Dots is one of the most challenging horses at the Ranger Foundation.
Those who knew him say his eccentricities began long before his eyesight issue.
The Ranger Foundation was warned before his arrival that he was difficult to catch, but they didn't know he was almost impossible to touch. Caring for Dots requires lots of patience.
A marvelous friendship has occurred between Dots and Ranger volunteer Chesley Simmons, who was drawn to the horse. He has spent two years working patiently with him and has established such a bond, that he can handle Dots almost as if he were normal.
Interestingly, as suspicious of humans that Dots is, he is the complete opposite when it comes to his fellow equines. The most social horse at the farm, Dots is friend to all, and gets along with any horse in his company.
It is a testament to the Ranger Foundation's principles that horses who have served humans, even horses who do not fit the mold, are retired, cared for, loved and appreciated.
The Ranger Foundation is a non-profit retirement home for horses that have served people either as police horses, military horses, or therapeutic riding horses. Its mission is to give quality care in a peaceful setting to these horses. The organization is entirely staffed by volunteers.
Each month sponsors are sought for the horses, either as individuals or businesses. Sponsorships are $100/month, which covers feed, supplements, veterinarian, farrier, and dentist. There are also half-sponsorships of $50 a month available, as well as $1,000 donations, which count for one full year. Businesses and distant individual sponsors will receive periodic reports and photos of their horses, nearby sponsors may visit and care for their horse.
Experience the joy of horse ownership by sponsoring one of our wonderful Ranger horses! To learn more about The Ranger Foundation and sponsoring a horse visit www.rangerhorse.org
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