Meet Molly: The Pony That Inspires Hope
Posted by: Cara in: Injuries
Here’s a bit of hope for everyone who has suffered an injury (and everyone who has watched their beloved animals rehab from an injury).
This small pony, Molly, was left for dead after Hurricane Katrina hit southern Louisiana. Her owners had to abandon her, and she roamed on her own for weeks afterward, looking for food and water. When she was finally rescued, she was taken to a farm with hundreds of other abandoned animals. Once there, she was attacked by a pit bull and nearly had her right front leg gnawed off by the dog.
When vets finally examined her, her leg was in bad shape. Vets knew they couldn’t save the leg, and that meant putting Molly down. But one LSU vet, Rustin Moore, noticed how great a patient Molly was, unlike most other horses. She was careful to lie down on different sides of her body to avoid getting sores. She allowed people to handle her. She carefully shifted her weight and avoided overloading her one good front leg.
So Moore decided Molly was a good candidate for amputation and a prosthesis, something that is rarely, if ever, performed on horses. He removed her leg below the knee and had a human prosthesis designer build her a new leg, complete with a smiley-face imprinted on the bottom of her new hoof. Now, everywhere she walks, she leaves a smiley face behind.
Molly’s regular vet, Allison Barca, reports that Molly will hold her limb out when she wants the prosthesis on, and even let vets know when she’s tired of wearing it. The funniest part, says Barca, is when she can’t catch the three-legged Molly!
The best part of the story is that Molly has a very important job now. She brings smiles and laughs to the faces of people in shelters, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. Her will to survive and inspire hope prompted Barca to call her the “symbol for New Orleans itself.”