Rescued miniature Shetland pony Doolittle hasn’t had the easiest start to life, but luckily, he’s now thriving under the care of Blue Cross’ team
When he first arrived at Blue Cross with his mum, Princess, as an eight-month-old foal, miniature Shetland Doolittle struggled to walk. But, after 170 days of care from the charity’s team, he’s now thriving and loving frolicking with his friends. He needed urgent surgery to help him walk because he’d been bred to be so tiny, so some of the joints in his legs hadn’t developed properly.
Jess Hall, Horse Welfare Assistant at Blue Cross in Burford, said: “When Doolittle first arrived, he was really struggling to move.The ligament that usually releases as the horse moves his leg was getting stuck on the patella, so his legs would get stuck in place. It wasn’t painful for him, but it wasn’t very comfortable either.
“Sadly, this is quite common in the tiny Shetlands, due to the bad breeding that often happens. He’s always been a confident little guy, but we were quite worried about introducing him to other ponies as he is so small. We took it slowly and introduced him to some slightly bigger horses with his mother and he took it all in his stride, so we knew he was ready to find a new gang of his own.”
Doolittle quickly became fast friends with Ghost and Brook, two cobs of a similar age to Doolittle. The story has a happy ending, too – after 173 days under Blue Cross care, adorable Doolittle was adopted by Joanne, where he joined another Blue Cross graduate, Shaun.
Joanne said: “After losing Shaun’s best friend to old age we were on the lookout for another four-legged friend to keep him happy and came across the cutest little face via Blue Cross.
“Next thing you know, Doolittle arrived and settled straight into the madhouse! He instantly became friends with Shaun and they’re always seen messing around and winding each other up under the watchful eye of Olly.
“Over the last few months of having him he has grown from strength to strength and has such a lovely confident character! He enjoys cuddles from everyone and finds pooh picking extremely exciting…he doesn’t have a problem with movement anymore! He has been a great addition to the gang who is adored by everyone that meets him.”
For more information, visit bluecross.org.uk