Pony who helped thousands of children to ride dies

November 30, 2010

The Horse Trust in Britain has farewelled Breeze, a pony who retired to the sanctuary last year after 19 years of service teaching thousands of children to ride.


The Horse Trust's Breeze.
"Breeze was a little poppet and everybody loved her," said Shirley Abbott, the yard manager with the trust.

"It's so sad that she's gone and all the staff, volunteers and visitors will miss her. It never gets any easier losing our horses even though I've been in the job for over 10 years."

Breeze was 29 and came to the trust from the Horse Rangers Association.

The 13.2-hand New Forest Pony retired to the trust's Home of Rest for Horses in Speen, Buckinghamshire, when she started having seizures, which meant that it was no longer safe for the Horse Rangers to ride her.

During her long service for the Horse Rangers Association, Breeze taught thousands of children to ride and was one of their most popular horses, according to its stable manager, Theresa Barrett.

"She was a great all-round pony and was perfect for teaching children to ride," said Theresa. "The children were really sad to hear about her passing away - she was a massive favourite because she was such a good little pony."

Breeze was involved in various activities at the Horse Rangers Association, including Riding for the Disabled and teaching work, as well as hacking, jumping and musical rides.

She even had the honour of taking part in the All The Queen's Horses extravaganza at Windsor Castle to celebrate the Queen's golden jubilee celebrations in May 2002.

In November, Breeze developed a condition called orbital cellulitis, which is a serious infection of the tissue behind the eye.

Intensive treatment was undertaken to try and stop the infection. However, it could not be controlled and started to spread.

When it became clear that the condition was not being controlled and that Breeze was suffering, staff made the sad decision to euthanise her.

"She was really brave in her last week," said Abbott. "She never grumbled and put up with all the treatment, even though she was obviously in discomfort. Sadly even though we did our best, it wasn't enough."