Equine Rescue Centre
Articles Blog

Equine Rescue Centre

August 22, 2019

– Victoria, would you call
yourself an animal lover? VICTORIA NOLAN: Definitely,
which is why it’s heartbreaking to hear about any animal
suffering or being neglected. Just like the woman in our first
story who’s doing her part to try and help. Angelo Welbourn
of Chester Basin, Nova Scotia is the founder of
Integrity’s Haven Equine Rescue Center Society, or IHERC. VICTORIA NOLAN: IHERC is
a farm for senior, sick, or abused animals. Angela takes in the
distressed animal, nurses them back to
health, or rehomes them. And if necessary, gives
them a forever home. ANTHONY MCLACHLAN: Halifax’s
Laura Bain recently traveled to IHERC’s farm and discovered an
animal sanctuary that is very much a labor of love. ANGELA WELBURN: Basically,
what it boils down to, Laura, is I want them to
die with dignity. I want them to die knowing
that somebody loved them, because a lot of these
horses come here, they’ve been abused
or neglected. LAURA BAIN: At IHERC farm,
you can feel the love. From Angela and
from the animals. All eight saddle horses,
three miniature horses, three rescue cats, and six dogs
by all appearances seem to be very happy to be here. ANGELA WELBURN: My barn
doors are always left open, so it’s up to the animal to come
and go when he or she likes. LAURA BAIN: It’s an idyllic life
that is a far cry from the harsh lives many of these
horses have led. Like Dreamer. ANGELA WELBURN: She was
one of 18 neglected horses, so when she arrived, her front
feet– her back feet as well, but her back feet
have come around. Her front feet though, were
literally worn right down. The sole of her foot
wasn’t worn right off. Her feet we’re really,
really bad shape. With Cocoa, Cocoa was a
five-year-old standard bred who was kept in a farm in
Pugwash along with others. Certainly not an abuse
case, but very neglected. LAURA BAIN: IHERC is also home
to a more unusual rescue, a zonkey. ANGELA WELBURN: Say hello Laura. This is Zelda, you can pet her. LAURA BAIN: Zelda was saved from
slaughter by an animal lover in Halifax. ANGELA WELBURN: Then she
contacted our farm and said that I rescued a Zonkey but I don’t
have a place to put her. Would you be able to help? She’s a zebra hybrid, which
means that Zelda is man made by using a zebra and a donkey. LAURA BAIN: Angela’s rescue
center started when she was in search of a companion for
her own horse back in 2001. ANGELA WELBURN: I went to
actually purchase a horse. And that horse had
severely hurt me. Within minutes of even
approaching the horse, he had thrown me against a wall
and dislocated my shoulder. He was quite violent. LAURA BAIN: She decided she
wanted to rehabilitate that horse. She arranged to buy
him just in time, the horse was on his
way to be sold for meat. ANGELA WELBURN: So I paid to
have that trailer u-turned. I got him and the passion began. LAURA BAIN: Today that
horse, known as Freedom, is alive and well
here on the farm. ANGELA WELBURN: He’s gentle. Wouldn’t think twice about
putting a two-year-old on him. He’s fantastic. He just needed someone, and
that someone was me, I guess. Yeah, what’s mommy got, Zelda? Oh, who’s that for? LAURA BAIN: Angela doesn’t keep
every rescue she takes in. ANGELA WELBURN: If an animal is
sick and I can make it well and it’s young enough to be
rehomed, then it’s rehomed. If it’s an animal that’s going
to remain on medications or it’s been injured and the chances of
having longevity are slimmer, then they stay here. LAURA BAIN: Angela works full
time as a business manager in the city. She looks after the
animals mostly by herself, with help from volunteers. It can be hard going. ANGELA WELBURN: The
toughest part, of course, is losing that animal. Is losing the animal. And financially, I guess, is
the second toughest thing. I mean, it’s expensive to take
someone else’s animal and try and make it happy and
give it a healthy life. LAURA BAIN: But the happy
animals contentedly eating hay in this paddock make up for
any heartbreak or hardship. Angela says her
mission is simple. ANGELA WELBURN: A safe haven. A place to die and to live out
their retirement years with dignity, full bellies, love. It’s worth it. It’s worth getting up
every morning at 4:34, it’s worth staying up until
11:00 or 11:30 out in your barn for. It’s the only passion I have in
my life, is helping animals. VICTORIA NOLAN: Wow, the
sanctuary is amazing. Angela is doing a fantastic job. And to think, she’s
not only running IHERC, but holding down a
full time job as well. I’m blown away by her
compassion and commitment. ANTHONY MCLACHLAN: As am I. And what about Zelda? Laura mentioned that Angela
had a Zonkey before the shoot, but I must admit I was
a little skeptical. I’d never heard of a
Zonkey before, have you? VICTORIA NOLAN: I hadn’t
heard of one either. ANTHONY MCLACHLAN: You see? Laura also tells us that
Angela’s herd is about to grow. One of the miniature horses
named Abby is set to deliver a foal in early June. VICTORIA NOLAN: Oh my gosh,
a miniature horse foal. I can only imagine how
adorable that would be. ANTHONY MCLACHLAN: If you’re
interested in learning more about IHERC or keeping up with
the new additions to the farm, visit Angela’s website at
integrityshavenequinerescuecentr e.ca.

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