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Nutty's Equine Hospital Emergency

Updated: Jan 20

Nutty, Ardennes Draft Horse in field
Nutty, Ardennes Draft Horse

2024 hasn’t had the best of starts for us. As many of you know, last year we lost access to part of our sanctuary where our stables were located. We are currently in the process of building new stables on our visitors yard, but while we battle the non-stop bad weather, we have had to temporarily move some of our bigger horses to a paid livery yard.


On New Year’s Day, one of our volunteers noticed that Nutty, our Ardennes draft horse wasn’t looking quite right and potentially had choke, so the out-of-hours vet was quickly called. We are lucky to have a good vet, James, but sadly Nutty needed more inspection and had to be scoped, meaning a tube had to be inserted up her nose and into her stomach. Eventually James managed to dislodge a blockage but also noticed Nutty had developed a respiratory infection meaning a course of antibiotics needed to be prescribed. 


On day 2, Nutty still hadn’t shown any signs of improvement, and was rushed to Oakham Veterinary Hospital. The veterinary experts then managed to continue clearing the choke blockage and Nutty has since developed pneumonia.


While Nutty is not out of the woods yet, this is more promising and treatable news. She will stay at the Equine Hospital for a little bit longer. We would like to thank all the vets treating her and Will for helping transport her.


Our sanctuary’s nature means that we will always have high veterinary bills, and we never expect any less. However, with the loss of the stables and the additional costs to build more, this is proving to be a very challenging time.


The current estimate from the vet and Equine Hospital for Nutty's stay and treatment is approximately £3000, though this figure might increase should her condition change. Additionally, factoring in our personal vet fees and transportation expenses, we anticipate these combined costs to range between £3000 and £5000.


If you are able to support our animals and leave a donation, please see our website or GoFundMe fundraiser.

If you would like to donate directly to our bill at Oakham Vets please either get in touch, or contact them directly.


We kindly ask you keep Nutty in your thoughts at this difficult time, and we thank you for your amazing support to us, and our animals.


We will keep our Facebook page updated with Nutty's condition.


Terena, volunteers and animals. X


Update, 4th January 2024


Firstly, thank you for all the incredible support, kind words and donations. We are only a very small charity, but we do believe our heart is huge.


Earlier today we heard from the specialist vets at Oakham Equine Hospital where they are doing everything they can to care for Nutty.


Unfortunately, Nutty has developed a high temperature and respiratory rate overnight, causing the vets to worry about the pneumonia more and more.


She is also struggling to swallow effectively, even with a very sloppy mash, she develops choke, but after several scopes of her oesophagus, the vets currently can’t find the root-cause of her problem.


We have been advised that she will be staying at the equine hospital for the foreseeable future, until the specialists can hopefully figure out what’s going on.


Her situation isn’t good at the moment, so we ask for all your positive thoughts and support.



Update, 5th January 2024

Thank you for all your incredible support, it’s very much appreciated and brings a tear to our eyes. We have managed to raise over £2000, more than half way to our goal, thanks to the incredible generosity of our supporters. This money will go directly to Nutty’s medical bill.


Today, Terena went to visit Nutty at Oakham Equine Hospital, where she received lots of deserved hugs and fuss. ❤️


Nutty is on a very strict feeding regime and antibiotic drip, but thankfully she is responding well, although not out of the woods, she is showing some perkier signs.


We have been advised she will remain in hospital for a while longer, while she is on her drip and medication, and until the specialists are certain she is recovering.


Please, please continue to send your healing and positive thoughts, your support is vital to our sanctuary.


Update, 8th January 2024

We have seen some absolutely amazing support over the weekend, including some very generous donations. We are so grateful for all the love and support.


Nutty is still being cared for at Oakham Equine Hospital, her condition remains stable, but unfortunately the specialists still can’t figure out what is going on. She is struggling to eat hay without bringing on choke symptoms but seems okay with very sloppy foods.


The vets today are going to continue their treatment and carry out extra tests, including a barium swallow test.


We would like to take this opportunity to thank the vets for their continued hard work and care for Nutty.


We have been advised she will continue to remain in their care for longer, so we desperately ask for your continued support. So far her bill is over £3000 and will continue to rise quite rapidly with more tests being conducted and her stay extended.


Update, 20th January 2024

We are pleased to let everybody know, that we have brought Nutty home from her long stay at Oakham Equine Hospital at Melton Mowbray.


While she is stable enough to be back home with us, we still must remain vigilant and monitor her for any signs of lingering illness.


Her condition is still not fully understood, and sadly will most likely be on medication for the rest of her life. The hardest adjustment is that she isn’t allowed to eat any hay, haylage or any solid hard foods, which also means no carrots, apples, polo mints, etc, and must only continue eating sloppy food, again, most likely for the rest of her life. But thankfully she is allowed out to eat grass.


We would like to personally thank everybody for their incredible, continued support of Nutty and our small sanctuary.


With your donations via GoFundMe and our website, we've successfully covered Nutty's staggering medical bill of £4,774 to the veterinary hospital. We have also paid hundreds to our own local vets.


We ask for your continued support, and donations where possible. Although she is doing well, there is always the worry that her choke may happen again, resulting in more vet trips.

Fingers crossed this won’t happen.

Thank you once again,

Love, ❤️

Terena and all the animals at our sanctuary

Equine Vet Bill of £4,744.11
Equine Vet Bill of £4,744.11



Nutty, an Ardennes Draft Horse
Nutty, an Ardennes Draft Horse

Warning: Graphic images below, showing Nutty before and after her stomach inspection.



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