Young Riders Care For Horses Dying From Tainted Feed04:07
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A group of young riders at a ranch in South Florida is grooming and giving treats to nearly two dozen horses that are dying from eating tainted feed a few months ago.

The riders call it "spa days" for their beloved horses. One of the riders, 13-year-old Jamie Buis, told Here & Now's Robin Young that the experience of caring for her dying horse has made her stronger.

Interview Highlights

On "spa days" for the horses

Jamie Buis competes on her horse Ultimatum -- one of the horses sickened by tainted feed. (Courtesy of the Buis family)
Jamie Buis competes on her horse Ultimatum -- one of the horses sickened by tainted feed. (Courtesy of the Buis family)

“A couple times a week, we have some of the younger girls come in and groom and bathe and give treats and just take care of all the horses.”

“I’ve been going every day to see my horses. We give them a lot of baths, rinse them off if they’re hot. We brush them a lot, give them lots of treats, and give them lot of hay—make them as comfortable as possible and happy.”

On her horse, Ultimatum

“When you own a horse you have a connection with them that you can’t really explain to people who don’t have horses. And it’s really incredible when you get on, the relationship that you have on the ground with them – it translates over into riding. The horses are more willing to work for you when they love you and like your company.”

On how this experience has changed her

"I didn't realize how much I appreciate my horse. I've never been through something harder. If you told me a couple of months ago what would've happened, I would've laughed and said, 'Oh, I can't handle that.' I realize how much stronger I am now."

Guest

  • Jamie Buis, 13-year-old equestrian who is among those caring for the dying horses.

This segment aired on December 19, 2014.

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