As promised, here is part two of the saga surrounding the 2008 story of two thoroughbreds that were given away on Seattle Craigslist.
While Peter was safe and sound, no one knew what happened to William. MeSue supplied one photo of him to assure everyone that she had not dumped him someplace. After that, he seemed to disappear from the radar.
William in 2008
In 2013, while reading a Facebook page that lists free horses in Washington, there was an ad posted for a Free 10 year old thoroughbred. Again, I had the eerie feeling that this was a horse I had encountered in the past. Upon further inquiry, I found out that the horse’s name was indeed William. A woman named MeSue owned him, and he had been pawned off on different people in the community for several years since MeSue didn’t want to take care of him. After he was originally picked up in May of 2008, I am told by several sources that he was taken to a “trainer’s” farm. MeSue dropped him off, paid for a month of board, and never came back for him. For FIVE years he was passed around to different people while MeSue’s son would ride him occasionally in WASHET.
Not only did I want William and Peter to be reunited, but I also knew William’s life was in danger once again. MeSue stated she would be taking him to the auction in Hermiston if he didn’t get picked up soon. Why would MeSue haul him to the Hermiston sale (in Oregon) instead of taking him to the Enumclaw sale which is much closer? Unlike the Enumclaw sale, the Hermiston sale does not offer up horses for a “second chance” after they are purchased by kill buyers. Many of them load up the night of the sale and begin their one-way trip across the border. You drop them off, they run through the sale, and after that they vanish with no paper trail. Convenient, right?
William was being offered to the first person that showed up with a horse trailer. While people in the community were working to protect him, I knew I had to act quickly since there was an auction coming up just a week away. You can probably imagine by now that any transaction with MeSue is not going to be a simple one. Although the horse was free, I was now told he was $35 to cover his wormer and vaccines. Then the price went to $75, and before I knew it the horse was going to cost $150. MeSue claimed she’d just had his vaccines done and his teeth floated and needed to be compensated for the cost. After getting an address and setting a time, I headed over to pick William up.
I arrived at the house at 11:00 in the morning. The horses were running wildly around the pasture still waiting for their breakfast. MeSue met me in the road and began telling me the story about how she had obtained William and was erroneously accused of wrongdoing. She proceeded to talk about the death threats she had received, and claimed to have a two-inch thick file in the house that was full of hate mail. She continued whine about how she was being victimized, all the while using her tongue to play with her fake tooth in a fashion that only a small child would find amusing.
This, my friends, is the textbook definition of sociopath. As defined by dictionary.com: A person with a psychopathic personality whose behavior is antisocial, often criminal, and who lacks a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience.
William was fairly easy to catch, although he clearly didn’t want to be taken away from his small pile of food, which would normally be his only meal of the day. He was thin, dirty, and covered in thick layer of dried mud. The other horses in the pasture had blankets, but not William. He was clearly just a third wheel. After loading in the trailer, MeSue reminded me of the money that was needed to cover his vet bill. I asked if she had any records to document when he’d had his dewormer, vaccine, and dental exam so that I could pass them along to my vet once we got home. While still witlessly flicking her porcelain prosthetic in and out of her mouth, she tapped her temple with her finger and said, “It’s all up here.” As I quickly got in the truck to drive away, she asked me to send lots of updates on him since she loved him so much. Ummm, clearly not.
Although it was the middle of winter, William got a bath when we got home. He was also dewormed and had his feet trimmed. Under all the mud I found a huge abscess in one of his hooves just below the coronet band. It would take more than a year to get his feet healthy enough so he’d be sound again. Some of the photos of his hoof rehabilitation are too graphic to share, so they won’t be posted here. He also had a fractured knee sometime at the track and had not had care for it.
Hoof abscess all cleaned up
After giving him an anthelmintic, he started passing tons of bot fly larvae. Clearly he had not been dewormed earlier. My vet said he had not his teeth floated either. Pretty much everything MeSue said was a lie. William also had severe skin problems. His hair was falling out in handfuls, leaving huge bald patches all over his body. The vet said it was due to malnutrition.
Through his tattoo, the horse was identified as Vymeajag, a 2003 Canadian bred gelding that raced briefly at Hastings Park and also Portland Meadows. Total earnings: $6843.
Vymeajag currently resides with his old pal, Petersburg Knight, and has a pony mare that is his best friend.
The new Peter and William
Personality wise, Peter and William are polar opposites. William enjoys life in the slow lane and avoids work at all costs. He has got to be one of the laziest thoroughbreds on the planet! Nevertheless, he is a reliable trail horse and has also excelled at trail course obstacles.
Peter and William on a trail ride
All dressed up for Cinco de Mayo
Vymeajag has also been in parades and can be ridden by youth. During his first parade, he lead the whole time and was as cool as a clam.
Parade in 2013
Doing what they do best…mowing the grass