She was rescued from a kill pen and didn't respond well to two trainers.
Ms Baileys came into the Mustang Restoration Program on March 17, 2020. She is such a sensitive and pure mustang, and her story is not unique...
Ms Baileys is a "kill pen rescue." Whatever happened in her life before being in the kill pen was so inappropriate for her that her behavior became unacceptable to the people who had her. She became dangerous to people, to the point where people had given up on her.
This is where some amazing people from Shiloh Acres Horse Rescue found her. These are amazing people who dedicate their lives to saving horses. There was something about her there in the kill pen, waiting to be sold for meat, that caught the eye of her rescuers.
Then, on February 28th, George got this message from a well-respected veterinarian:
"Hi George, there's a mustang mare over here that was picked up at the kill buyers lot. The rescuers tried working with her and wasn't able to make much headway. Then a trainer friend of mine had her for a month and couldn't make any headway. They haven't been able to get close enough to read her brand. I'm sending you a couple of pictures of her. I think she's 7. Would you by any chance have room for her in your program?"
The moment she stepped out of the trailer, she was in a whole new realm, one where she would have the space and support to be restored to wholeness as a wild mustang living in harmony with humans. George begins with Ms Baileys by just sharing space.
Slow dancing with wild horses lets the horses discover their own sense of safety standing next to humans. Baileys soon learned that George's approach is different from what she'd experienced before.
Kira-Nina, also a kill-pen rescue Mustang, was the first one to offer Ms Baileys friendship. It's standard practice to get a halter on a wild Mustang before they leave the BLM holding centers. For most people, it's necessary to have a halter on a horse in order to work with them. For George, his goal was to earn her trust enough to take it off. Then, she'd be free to go safely live with the entire herd.
"Halter equals control. No halter equals connection, not just with me, but with all that is Mustang." - George
Soon, George and Ms Baileys were exploring touch. George starts by offering a hand and Baileys gets the option to touch him or not. It's when the human becomes approachable and touchable in the horse's eyes that connection and trust become obtainable.
Various ambassadors from the Mustang herd were introduced to Ms. Baileys to help restore her own Mustang essence, relax deeper and feel as a welcome addition to the herd.
May 17, 2020: It felt like the right time and Ms Baileys was open to the prospect of not wearing the halter and joining the herd in the morning. Ms Baileys and I were dancing in the dark and it worked out beautifully with a little bit of salsa dancing in the middle.
Free from the halter Ms Baileys could join the herd on the five-acre dry lot and rediscover the joy of being a Mustang and the security of being a part of the herd. Through connection, freedom was rediscovered and kindness could truly be appreciated.
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