MANOR, Texas (KXAN) — The 23-year-old horse who was hauled ashore from rushing water near Manor Tuesday is recovering nicely at his home at Healing with Horses Ranch.
Rescuers with swift water training worked for two hours to pull Weston from Gilleland Creek.
“I felt panic and terror. Several times during that two-hour time span I thought we were going to lose him,” said Patty D’Andrea, the Executive Director at Healing with Horses Ranch. “Weston fought and even though he was exhausted, he kept trying to get out and keep his nose out of the water. He never really panicked through the whole process. He was really trusting and knew that we were going to take care of him.”
D’Andrea told KXAN Wednesday that Weston is doing well after the ordeal.
“He’s recovering really well. He’s been here all night, eating and drinking normally now,” D’Andrea said. “Honestly I’m shocked because he has a little scrape here, and a little scrape on his eye and that’s about it. I’m sure he’s sore everywhere but he’s recovering well.”
Healing with Horses Ranch gives riding lessons to kids and adults with physical, emotional and learning disabilities. D’Andrea says she’s learning what the high water can do and thinks what happened with Weston was just a freak accident. She says the ranch is now looking to get barns to protect the horses and training for local rescue crews.
“They assessed the situation and did a really good job,” she said of the rescue crews. “The one thing I’m going to work on getting now is large animal rescue training because no one really knew how to handle a horse in that situation. They were going with their gut instinct and I think the community and myself need to be trained on large animal rescue, between the fires and flooding in Central Texas.”
Weston was donated to Healing for Horses Ranch about one year ago, where he now serves as one of 10 therapy horses.
“We needed larger horses for a new veterans program we were developing. We took him to Special Olympics just last week. You know you can trust Weston with anybody,” D’Andrea said.
Weston, a Tennessee Walker, used to perform dog field trials in his younger days. She also said he did a lot of trail rides with his previous owner, who gave him up when she retired from the horse business and wanted him to have a good home. Weston was an only horse with his previous owner but he loves being with the herd now at his new home.