Simba was bought at the New Holland auction in Pennsylvania. For most horses, winding up at the New Holland auction is a death sentence, as many of the horses are sold for slaughter. Luckily for Simba, he caught the eye of a woman who wanted to buy a horse for her young daughter to ride. However, it appeared Simba had not been schooled in trail riding, as he bucked off his young rider. The owner turned Simba over to a horse rescue, where he was enrolled in a professional horse training program. He progressed so well that he was quickly fostered by a woman who was interested in riding Simba in trail riding competitions. Simba and his new foster owner took 6th place at the Maryland State Fair competition! Go Simba!
Simba's left eye sustained an injury; ulcerated and untreated by an equine veterinary eye specialist, Simba suffered and went blind in that eye. In addition, unruly mares were bullying Simba, which created an untenable situation for Simba leading to unpredictable behaviors. His previous rescue was asked to take him back, but they were unable to do so.
The situation became dire when there was talk of euthanizing Simba, and Midnight's Equine Rescue and Sanctuary came to Simba's rescue! He arrived at MERAS on January 8th, 2017, and immediately became friends with owner Wendy Zabicki.
Rhonda has a bit of an uncertain past. We do know that Rhonda spent seven years at a horse rescue. During those seven years there were very few people that could touch her, let alone pet her. Her name at her previous rescue was RB ("Rope Burn"), which I was told was what you would get if you got a hold of her. She was very insecure and fearful. She got along with the two horses in her field which were Carly Rae and a small pony. Carly Rae had already joined our rescue, and the small pony got adopted, leaving Rhonda all by herself. She was not doing well so the rescue asked if MERAS would be willing to take her on as a sanctuary.
In 2016, with some help from a few friends and volunteers, Rhonda was carefully convinced that going on a trailer was better than staying in the paddock. We backed the trailer right up to our fence and released Rhonda into the field. We couldn't possibly leave her name as RB, so we renamed her after a strong woman who has a lot of fight in her. It became evident that she was welcome, as she jumped the fence and joined the herd by herself. Rhonda will gladly take carrots, apples and peppermints from just about anyone, but is still very leery of letting anyone touch her. We will never give up hope that she may one day learn to trust, but until then she is welcome to live her life here at Midnight’s.
Wendy's daughter, Kirsten, came to her the day before her 18th birthday and asked her to save Manny. This was a unique rescue, as Manny was only 4 months old when Kirsten found him being sold on a Facebook page. She watched the post for about a week and found out that Manny had already been in three homes and was looking for his fourth. Turns out that he was a bottle-fed baby, supposed to be a Paint/Belgian cross, and needed somewhere that he could find stability.
We know that babies are not usually put in sanctuaries, but we feared that this boy would be passed around, flip-flopping from home to home, until he either got lucky enough to find a great home or he was sold at an auction. So, Manny skipped those steps and came straight to us. This is one lucky man! Our hope for Manny is that he can one day do therapy work for people.
Chiquita came to the rescue as an owner surrender in 2015. As a two-year-old Filly, she had already found herself flip-flopping homes, ending up in an auction house and being bought by a well-meaning young girl who only found herself to be overwhelmed. The new owner decided that she really wanted Chiquita to have a wonderful home for the rest of her life, so she reached out to Midnight’s.
Chiquita may not have a horrible situation that she left but she no longer has to worry about where she’s going to end up. She is now a part of our herd and will be until her last day. With her sweet and attentive nature, our hopes are that Chiquita will one day be able to do therapy work for people.
Gunner used to run steeplechase races in Maryland. As an equine athlete, he should have trained, raced, and then been allowed to recover and rest for several months. However, Gunner was forced to run in too many races without rest and injured his legs and hooves.
His steeplechase career was over, but his calm demeanor and gentle personality made him a natural for the Mounted Police Unit of the National Park Service in Washington D.C. Sadly, lameness forced his retirement after a few short months.
Gunner had no place to retire until we heard about his plight and came to his rescue in January 2019. He has since found a forever home with us, and his new herd.
Miette is a resident horse. As a resident horse, all of her care is paid for by Wendy Zabicki. No donations are used toward her care.
Miette started her life off as a racehorse named Lake Boone. She was bought off the track by a wonderful lady who utilized her for eventing. After a few years, she was then passed to another young lady who was also eventing. When that young lady was going off to college, it was at the same time that Kirsten's horse, Luna, had broken her pelvis and Kirsten was looking for a ride in eventing. We had already known Miette for quite some time as both of these people rode at the same barn that we did. It became clear that it was meant to be. Unfortunately, after a little over a year, Kirsten had an accident on a different horse and ended up breaking her leg in three spots. From that day forward Miette became retired and was more of a trail horse. Miette will spend the rest of her time with us, and the rescue horses, at Midnight’s Equine Rescue and Sanctuary.