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March 25, 2015
Aqui Cour is no longer with us

He was born in 1993 and died on march 25th at twenty three. I can't express my anger at this senseless death. Aqui died young due to the exploitation and couldn't care less attitude he experienced at the hands of humans. His life was not "humane" in any sense of the word. Aqui, I think you came to trust people during the last four years of your life, the years you spent here. We did everything in our power to help you but in the end nothing worked.

I love you very much and already miss you.

Aqui Cour
the whole story

Aqui, an English thoroughbred, was born in 1993
and arrived at the Shelter April 15, 2011.

He was about 264 pounds underweight.

      His infected, pus filled knee.

Burned nose.
Torn Achilles tendon due to a pelvis that was severely out of alignment.


Aqui Cour was born in France and arrived in Italy when he was six. 
He competed in both flat and steeplechase racing before einding up at a trail riding stable. 
When after a bad accident he was no longer able to be ridden he was deemed "useless" and in that deplorable condition arrived at the shelter.


With the collaboration of Andrea Bertoli D.M.V. (Osteopath) and Sergio Forapani  (Orthopedist) Aqui Couer is coming around.  Some damage is irreparable, we can only try to ameliorate his condition.  Since having his teeth treated by Simone Zoccarato D.M.V. Aqui Cour has been putting on weight.
Help with Aqui's upkeep.
Aqui was brought to the shelter by a truck driver from Bergamo with the understanding that he would pay for Aqui's upkeep and veterinary expenses.  After three months Giovanni disappeared  leaving us with incurred expenses of 1600 euros.

We're looking for a long distance sponsor for Aqui Cour.  By giving up just two pizzas a month you can contribute to the well being of our "Aquilone"!

Aqui Cour's story

is one that could be told by many horses who like him are emblematic of the exploitation inherent in competitive racing. Horses who after their achievements, races and earnings (Aqui won 65,000 euro racing for his owner) end up being exploited in riding stables. When they are no longer profitable for the stables they are used for horse therapy and eventually end up at the slaughterhouse. This the fate of most of these noble creatures.

Aqui Cour is a French Thoroughbred born in 1993. He competed until he was seven,victorious in enough races to earn his owner a considerable amount of money. At the end of his career Aqui was sold and began working in riding stables. He was passed from stable to stable beginning his slow descent into hell. In one of the last stables where he worked he suffered a severe injury resulting in a torn Achilles tendon.

Injury after injury rendered Aqui un-rideable. Not even deemed worthy of humane euthanasia he was photographed, from his best angle, and posted on as a freebie.

Noticed by a potential new owner he was brought to the Shelter for rehabilitation before being transferred to his permanent new home. However, it was obvious from the initial exams that Aqui was in worse shape than what had been stated. Not only was his Achilles tendon torn and untreated but one knee had a suppurating abscess, his beautiful face was sunburned and eaten by insects and he was severely malnourished. His new owner decided to board him at the Shelter promising to pay all expenses for his treatment and board. Promises unkept. The owner soon vanished abandoning Aqui with all his problems and health issues.

It was now 2011, Aqui Cour was only eighteen and he became a permanent resident of the Shelter.

The first thing we tackled was his Achilles tendon. Over time Aqui had compensated for his injury by putting too much weight on his right rear leg resulting in pain and inflammation. His quality of life and spirit improved and were maintained with the help of supplements including devil's claw, ginger and MSM. Massage and electromagnetic blanket therapy became part of his daily regime. His tendon was supported by a structure held in place by a bandage. This enabled him to walk, lie down and stand unassisted. Aqui started to feel good, live without constant medication and was able to make new friends both equine and human.

Unfortunately in August of 2014 he took a turn for the worse. Eco-graphs and X-rays showed that his right rear leg which compensated for the injured left lacked cartilage and synovial fluid and that the femoral joint lacked cushioning.

Even though walking is painful for Aqui his style and joy of living remain undiminished.

His medical reports were sent to a clinic in Ferrara, one of the best in Italy for equine orthopedics. We soon received the results which were not positive. There was no surgical procedure which could help his condition.

There is one last hope for Aqui, an innovative treatment which consists of intra-articular injections of stanozolol a synthetic anabolic steroid. One injection a week for six weeks at a cost of 100 euro per injection. It will be two or three months after the last injection before we can determine if the treatment has been effective.

If the treatment doesn't work we'll continue with pharmaceutical pain management therapy for as long as his system can handle it after which Shelter and veterinary staff are prepared to humanely euthanize Aqui in his paddock where he'll be surrounded by his friends. A tragic fate caused by a past consisting of unpardonable abuse and neglect.

Let us not become accomplices to stories like these because there are many Aqui Cours, more than one can imagine. Lets put a stop to this chain of suffering.