On May 3, approximately 191 feral horses died while searching for water in the Tuba City stock pond Gray Mountain, in West Navajo. The horses became mired in mud and perished as they were too weak to pull themselves free. Only one horse survived.
There are estimated to be between 50,000 and 70,000 feral horses on the Navajo Nation; horses dying at this watering pond happens seasonally because of drought and famine. The President of the Navajo Nation, President Russell Begaye, said in a press release that these deaths are preventable if the local Navajo chapter had requested help from the Navajo Nation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
“Grace,” a 2-week-old filly, was found near her mother, who died in the mud. She was taken to the Coconino Humane Association and then transferred to the Aspen Veterinary Clinic, where she was cared for by veterinarian Allison Forbes.
Though she was close to death from dehydration and malnourishment, the filly was placed under intensive care and monitored closely. She is currently doing very well and will stay at the clinic for a few more days before being released to a foster home.
The horses who died in the watering hole will be buried onsite and the watering hole will be permanently covered to prevent more equine deaths.
Read more at News 4 Tucson.
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