Hi! My name is Gilbert. I’m a dwarf mini horse and I live with two other mini horses, Boots and Tony, at RVR Horse Rescue, along with twenty-five full-sized rescue horses who are recovering from abuse or neglect. I was saved by RVR Horse Rescue in 2016, along with my mom, Bonnie.

Everyone who sees me falls in love with me because I really am as cute as a button! But my tiny size comes at a steep cost, both literally in regards to my vet bills and physically in regards to my poor health. I’m really lucky that the wonderful people at RVR value my life and are trying so hard to help me. The average horse owner would not and could not financially take on my challenges.

My Medical Nightmare: My mini-moms call me a money pit because the care for all my dwarfism-related health issues is costly. I’m only two years old, but I already have arthritis from my skeletal deformities. My continual vet care includes regular costly applications of acrylic hooves to try to keep my legs straight so I can walk. My last check-up didn’t go very well and the vet said the next step for my worsening condition is leg braces. The thing is, my condition was totally avoidable! With a simple genetic blood test, a reputable breeder can avoid mating animals that result in the genetic mutation that causes dwarfism.

So now, my mini friends and I have become RVR Horse Rescue’s ambassadors to help educate the public about the health consequences of dwarfism and the need to use reputable breeders. I am making a difference! I love going to events and meeting people who are always so excited to see me. I’m training to become a therapy horse, so I can make people happy and help to spread awareness about the prevention of dwarfism at the same time. Not only do I go to events locally, but my online shows are educating children all across the country about proper horse care.

Our children’s outreach program is designed to stem the tide of equine abuse and neglect. I’m one of hundreds of horses whose lives were saved by RVR Horse Rescue. Our volunteers are amazing. They work around the clock to save as many lives as they can and the only payment they receive is a sloppy horse kiss. Can you help us with a tax deductible #GivingTuesday donation? Any amount makes a difference. http://rvrhorserescue.org/giving-tuesday/

Thank you from Shawn Jayroe and the RVR Horse Rescue Team!