Sorrel pony's condition improving

Butch Meriwether/Courtesy<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->Farrier Shawn Schmitt inspects the sorrel pony’s hooves after completing his second trim of its hooves. The pony was the subject of a joint investigation by the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office and Arizona Department of Agriculture last month into the possibility of neglect by the owner.

Butch Meriwether/Courtesy<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->Farrier Shawn Schmitt inspects the sorrel pony’s hooves after completing his second trim of its hooves. The pony was the subject of a joint investigation by the Mohave County Sheriff’s Office and Arizona Department of Agriculture last month into the possibility of neglect by the owner.

GOLDEN VALLEY - The sorrel pony that was the subject of a joint investigation last month by the Mohave County Sheriff's Office and Arizona Department of Agriculture seems to be getting healthier.

"The pony now appears to be in much better condition since I originally saw it last month when I trimmed its hooves," Farrier Shawn Schmitt said. "But it is going to take an additional 12 months of trimming before the pony will get back to normal condition."

According to Schmitt, he believes the pony is actually a Red Roan miniature horse instead of a sorrel pony as originally indicated in the law enforcement incident report.

"When I first saw the miniature horse, it could hardly move and appeared to be in a lot of pain," Schmitt said. "Now the horse can walk around and seems to be enjoying itself."

While visiting the miniature horse last Tuesday for its second trimming, Schmitt said the miniature horse seemed to be in a playful mood, and kept picking up a towel with its mouth and tossing it as if it was a toy.

When Mohave County Sheriff Lieutenant Barbara Larsen, who was part of the original investigation team, was notified of the second trimming of the hooves and current condition of the miniature horse, she said the incident report has been forwarded to the Mohave County Attorney's Office for review to determine if any criminal charges should be filed against the owner.

If anyone comes across what they suspect is a neglected or abused animal, they should call the MCSO at (928) 753-2141, or the Arizona Department of Agriculture Livestock Inspectors at 1 (800) 294-0305.