A Thank You to Pat Robinson

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As I deal with horse care during a constant below-freezing stretch of weather with brisk winds, I can't help but think about a reader who wrote to Horse Journal a few weeks ago. The full letter will be in our February 2011 issue, but I want to share some it here, as it expresses so beautifully how deeply many of us love horses. Pat Robinson, who operates the Moonshadow Horse Rescue in Missouri, was especially moved by our December 2010 review of ?The Forgotten Horses? by Tony Stromberg. It was originally published in 2008 in hardcover and just recently re-released in soft cover. ?it's a coffee-table book about rescue horses, wild horses, ignored horses . . . photos with little text. The pictures made us wish we could save every horse everywhere. Pat is one of the few doing what she can to help these horses. ?Most of my horses are outside with shelters, and I take hay and water to them,? wrote Pat. ?Despite my best efforts, one of the hoses had frozen, and it seemed I was constantly taking my gloves off to open gates, fix halters, put extra salt on the feed and so on. My fingers were frozen when I was done. While I was doing this, I wondered if anyone actually cared what I did. It takes all my time and all my money (plus some!).? After coming in from caring for her rescue horses on that cold, blustery winter day, she said she read our review and remembered why she does what she does. ?Many of the comments really hit home. The horse that said, ?I want to trust??that describes my old mustang. Now He's like a puppy dog and just as happy as can be (well, you can't catch him without a struggle, but he does love his ears rubbed if you don't have a halter). When I first got him, he was so scared. And the comment about the horse rubbing his head on his friend?s face, oh my gosh, I have a couple of horses just like that.? Like many rescue-farm owners, Pat?s work is nothing short of heroic. She paid a killer $200 on the spot to save a horse he had just purchased through auction for $35. She cares for a special-needs mini and a horse who was starved and needs to be brought back slowly, as well as cast-off show horses and abandoned breeding stock. And she does it all on her own. Pat, I want you to know that as moving as ?The Forgotten Horse? was, it's nothing compared to your letter. You have ensured that at least these horses will always be cared for and never have to worry again about whether they?ll have a loving home or not. ?I can easily visualize you flopping down in your chair after chores, exhausted and cold, and at the same time I see your horses outside in their shelter, contentedly munching their hay, out of the bitter wind, thinking, ?This must be what they meant when I heard about heaven.? Thank you, Pat.