Climate-controlled comfort a boon to blind Claire

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Claire enjoys her time on pasture, but her climate-controlled stable is a welcome retreat from the Texas heat. Photo: JP Bonnelly/ Black Beauty Ranch
Claire enjoys her time on pasture, but her climate-controlled stable is a welcome retreat from the Texas heat. © JP Bonnelly/ Black Beauty Ranch

A blind bay Clydesdale mare named Claire is one of the first horses visitors meet at the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch in Murchison, Texas.

Claire, a clydesdale, came to the ranch in 2009 after being spared slaughter when the biomedical research plant in which she was raised was shut down.

In the beginning of the summer, volunteers at Black Beauty Ranch noticed Claire was experiencing respiratory issues.

Shortly after, she was diagnosed with anhidrosis, a condition making her unable to sweat to control her body temperature.

Immediately, ranch personnel began developing a plan so Claire could live a happy life in comfort.

The most important factor was providing her with a climate-controlled environment for the hot Texas summers.

A special stall was built for Claire to help regulate her temperature using salvaged materials from the sanctuary.

Anhidrosis occurs in all breeds and ages. Should other horses develop this condition in the future, they will benefit from the special stall too.

Claire still gets plenty of pasture time with her fellow equines, but she loves to stand and cool off with the airflow in her new stall.

She may be blind, but she hears a kind word and feels a gentle touch just as a horse with perfect eyesight would.

Claire continues to inspire her caretakers on a daily basis with the courage and strength it has taken her to overcome her past and her ability to trust humans once again.

Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch is operated by The Fund for Animals, an affiliate of The Humane Society of the United States.

It is the nation’s largest animal sanctuary, home to more than 1000 formerly abused, abandoned and neglected animals who are now living a life of peace and safety.

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