A horse that fell into a pool west of Lantana on Sunday died hours later, not from the ordeal but from colic and an intestinal obstruction, its owner said Sunday.
“We're very sad,” Erica Lucas, who operates New Spirit Farms, in a neighborhood north of Lantana Road and east of Florida's Turnpike, said Monday.
Shine, a 23-year-old Tennessee Walker, already was in distress when it wandered to the pool, leaned in to drink, and slipped in, Lucas said. She said she called 911 and Palm Beach County Sheriff's deputies rigged 2-by-4s and a carpet to lead the animal out.
She said the horse never was in danger in the pool and actually was swimming around and standing in the 3-foot-deep shallow end but just balked at being led out. A Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office deputy walked into the pool in full uniform, sat down on the steps and calmed the steed, who the rescue crew then coaxed back onto dry land.
Later that night, Lucas said, the animal was back at its stall and had received intravenous medication and “we thought he was going to be fine,” but it then had a seizure and died.
“So nice. Thought he was a puppy,” Lucas said.
Since 2003, Lucas said, the nonprofit New Spirit Farms has taught children to ride horses. She said Shine, a “dark bay” (dark brown) gelding, was a family pet that came along when the Lucas relocated from Ohio.
She said she has six horses, some of them rescue animals, and Shine alone rode more than 1,000 children, and had done a lesson as recently as Saturday.