2016 marks the year of the horse for us. We have begun planning a sanctuary for abused horses and donkeys – there is not a place for them in the whole country at the moment.
The need to have a horse sanctuary, and one that also houses farm animals, is great. Not a month goes by that we are not contacted about a horse that needs urgent relocation and help. In most of those cases the lack of a sanctuary means “agonizing death in horrible circumstances” for the animal in need.
Thus, despite the lack of space, we are already caring for our first two rescued horses. The abused gypsy horse Penny, and the wild meat-horse Silencio, have found shelter in the small house yard of our chairlady Nadia Stancheva.
We continue our work on creating the first Horse Sanctuary in Bulgaria and already know its location. Our biggest hope is that we will see our hoses graze freely by the end of this summer. Horses Penny, Silencio, Borko, Mitko, Shakespeare and Sherlock as well as Velichka the donkey – cannot wait.
Loads of things need to happen for this plan to succeed. But the first is to purchase the right plots of Farm land, neighboring municipal land that can be rented cheaply.
We thank the “Shtipka” association and artist Michaela Pelicheva who are joining our efforts! Michaela painted and “Shtipka” printed charity t-shirts with three original designs:
30% of every t-shirt purchased are a donation for our horse Sanctuary.
The t-shirts cost 20 BGN (every size and design) and can be ordered at:
– From “Achilles” Horse Base, Bistritsa village, phone: 0878 922 790
Right now our horses live in different places. Babies Sherlock and Shakespear are at the shelter; Penny and Silencio are fostered; everyone else is residing in different stables. And since they all have health issues, the providing of proper care to them takes a lot of time and nerves.
We thank the 113 people who donate 2BGN by SMS for them every month: DMS KONE
to short number 17 777
If you love horses, if you too would like to be part of their Sanctuary, join us! A little by little and step by step we can become the start of a new life for the horses in Bulgaria.
Our horses’ bank account is:
FIBank; 37 Dragan Tzankov blvd, Sofia, BG;
IBAN: BG96FINV91501216606639 – USD
We thank our friends at Horses On Death Row whose help has allowed us to take the best possible care of orphaned babies Shakespeare and Sherlock.
Special thanks to “Home and Money” newspaper for spreading the word!
If you can help our horses reach more people, if you have friends who love them or would help – spread the word as well…
And special regards to Svetlio and his helpful friends – caring for the horses requires a great deal of work and also – patience.
Everything that happens at the shelter and clinic is only possible, because a generous person has decided to make a donation for the dogs. Every little injection, every de-worming tablet, every kibble chewed-up, every brick here exists, because a specific person decided to do a good deed.
We need help at any given moment. And if it looks like we’re a very rich and huge organization, it is only because we do not steal, and we work hard. And every cent that comes in – goes to the animals. So they can live in health and happiness, and the Farm can become a better place for them.
And this isn’t just money. Our endeavor is one of thousands of people – everyone helps out in the way they see fit. We especially want to thank everyone who has made a donation from our WISHLIST for their support. For the lives saved. For the full bellies. For the warm beds.
Thanks to our colleagues from “Podai raka – badi priatel!”, and special regards from our veterinarians. The donation really filled in on materials we urgently needed. Dog-kisses from the patients as well, for the supplements they received.
Hugs to A. and V. for the gift they made to the humans at our office this winter! After 3 years of work in a room without windows, we finally have light!!! And also – no need to run outside to check on passers-by every time.
Our horses were kept warm during the cold months thanks to the horse blankets that Caroline Vetter sent them.
Medical materials, cleaning and disinfecting detergents, bedding and of course – food, are amongst the items people chose to donate for the dogs at the Farm most often.
We had no idea back in 2009 (when we began helping the dogs at the municipal pound) that we could do so much for the dogs. Now, nearly 5000 lives later, we look around and realize how far we have come. Thanks to you.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, dear friends, for helping us help them!
We continue on 🙂
Currently, ARSofia takes care of 6 horses and 1 donkey. But only the two youngest babies – orphans Shakespeare and Sherlock live in our shelter – the Farm. The rest are taken care of in horse-ranges, where the conditions are better for them. But the little ones have to stay close to us. They need very special care, especially the younger one – Sherlock.
The cold didn’t do any good for the babies. Although they have an insulated little barn where they can cuddle up in the hay, the frost managed to hit our younger boy – 4 month old Sherlock. To keep him safe and warm, we had to place him in a little room in the dog building where he has heat and no way to go out alone.
At this age, it is very hard for the foals to make it without a mother. When they see Sherlock for the first time, most people ask us if he is a baby donkey, or a mule – he is so weak, no one believes he’s a tiny stallion. Movement is very important for his development, so, despite the cold, his best friend – Svetlio, takes him out a few times every day, even bringing him to visit us at the office…
Luckily, Shakespeare, who is only 3 months older is doing much better. He too receives food supplements from what you donated for Sherlock and it is doing him good. He is a little lonely without his “brother”, but the orphaned goats Milla and Mimi keep him good company. You can see him rush to get his lunch from Svetlio today:
If you would like to help us care for our horses, or want to be part of the making of the first horse and donkey sanctuary in Bulgaria, please, make a donation at:
FIBank; 37 Dragan Tzankov blvd, Sofia, BG; SWIFT: FINV BG SF
BENEFICIARY: A R Sofia Foundation; 23 James Bourchier blvd, Sofia, BG
Two little orphaned horses became part of the Farm’s colorful family – you can imagine how much we love them and how we care for them… But no matter how loved you are by a human, winter cold can be deadly if you’re a baby horse with no mummy. The ice cold nights will not be a problem for our darling Sherlock and Shakespeare.
With the help of our friends at Horses On Death Row, Svetilo built them a little stable to hide from the cold and cuddle in the hay. Our tiny goat orphans Mimi and Mila will also keep them company. We are overjoyed to introduce you to the youngest of our horses, keep your fingers crossed for them, so that we help them make it to a happy adulthood.
Gentle Shakespeare is 6 months old. He came in 2 months ago, when he was left without a mother, bound for the slaughterhouse. In this short while he became friends with everyone and become the cuddliest little guy in the world – clever, lovely, kind… A golden little horse.
He is eating well on his own, he is curious and calm. His best friends here are the two little orphan goats Mimi and Mila. Shakespeare might be just a tiny baby, but he is already the older brother of little guy Sherlock.
This little man is only 3 months old, but he spent 2 of them already without a mother. This is a big problem, since horses are herd animals and learn what it’s like to be a horse from the others, following their mother for 1 year and then living in groups of juveniles… And our baby already considers himself semi-human, so it’s very important that he learns from his brother Shakespeare how to treat people and other animals.
Sherlock is so young, he needs a special milk supplement in his menu. When he arrived his stomach was runny and crampy, but we managed to get him to stabilize. With the help of the donors, at the moment he has a very good diet and a special menu that keeps him happy. Of course – help is always needed.
Besides Shakespeare and Sherlock, we also take care of 5 other horses – Borko, Mitko, Penny, Silencio and Blake, as well as Velichka the donkey. Every week we receive at least a couple of signals of horses in distress needing us, but as we don’t have the space and resources – we are unable to help. Our big horses are fostered or in rented stables where they are getting all the special care they need.
We continue to work for the making of the first Horse sanctuary in Bulgaria. You can help us out by DONATING. In the meantime, you are welcome to meet the two little boys at the Farm – we are open every day, 365 days in a year!
Our sincere gratitude to our colleagues and friends from the Susy Utzinger Foundation – they sent the Farm a much needed donation. 4 pallets of very useful materials have arrived in Sofia and are already put to good use!
Among the many necessary things there are foldable crates, transport boxes, beds of all sizes, blankets and towels, feeding bowls, food, treats…
Our very special thanks for the medical instruments that d-r Marincheva and d-r Ilieva gladly received! And most of all for the stomach surgery sets that we use for spay/neuter – we really needed it, but it was not possible to put aside money for it. Also, the clinic got pinchers, scissors, hemostatic sets, and many other things that we use daily in our clinic.
The horses also got Christmas presents. Rugs to protect them in the winter cold, and collars of different sizes. Although all of the donations are second hand, we got everything washed, disinfected and well organized.
Our cordial thanks to the amazing people on the team of the Foundation and Susy herself – for all the amazing work they do for so many creatures all over the world. On the photo below – our senior administrator Sunny, inspecting the donation with pleasure, and choosing the perfect winter jacket (as you know, he is all bold and lovely).
This is Blake’s page – he is one of our rescued horses. You can find his original story published down below, the latest updates appear up here.
Today we were with Blake again and we’re in a hurry to share his new photos with you, so we can enjoy them together. The lovely team of Plana Horse Base have been taking a good care of him and the difference in his condition can be easily seen:
The boy feels and looks much better and is definitely getting stronger. The best part about his new situation is the fact that he has many horse friends, he is free to roam with them and he really loves the company.
Blake doesn’t spend his days lying on the ground anymore. He still lies down every couple of hours, when he gets tired, but he always tries to be as close to the other horses as possible, follows them about the field and is actively participating in the herd’s social life.
We are satisfied with his progress – he definitely looks happy and calm and isn’t needing anything. When he is not eating on his feet, he is eating lying down. On one hand – that is excellent, since he needs to put on much weight to reach a normal condition. On the other – his being heavy will be a problem for a normal movement on three legs, so we must watch out for it.
Our sincere gratitude to our amazing colleagues from Horses on Death Row, whose amazing help made a good life possible for Blake, and our other rescued horses – Penny and Silencio.
We were with Blake till late last night. We brought two veterinary orthopedists and had his leg x-rayed at all angles. Some samples were taken and more consultations need to happen before a plan for him can be laid out.
There is much to be done to improve Blake’s life. In his temporary home at “Plana kon” horse base he has already been brushed and dewormed. D-r Ralitza Grancharova gave him a full inspection, she and her colleague Nick managed to cut his overgrown hoofs, started a treatment for the infection he has and a little physiotherapy for the broken leg.
Blake feels OK, he is lively and friendly, spending most of his time grazing or lying down for a rest. Keep your fingers crossed for his recovery.
Blake’s original story 05/04/2016
The first time we met Blake was in May 2015. We got a signal about an abandoned horse with a broken leg not far from Sofia. We went there, bringing inspectors from the Food Safety Agency and the Police. Only to find that his case was already taken on by other people.
Two weeks ago, a whole year later, we were called again for the boy with the broken leg. We went to pick Blake up. No comment on how his condition has changed in time. What is important is that now we have him.
We housed Blake with our friend Vlado from horse base “Plana horse”. He will live there and be taken care of, until we are ready with the horse sanctuary.
Unfortunately, the boy is in a very bad condition. Besides the broken leg, he is very thin and has little muscle left on his poor body. Nevertheless, he is extremely friendly and has a great will to live.
There is much work to be done with him. First, we must help him recuperate his strength and find a way to ease his condition, so he can live free of pain. The broken leg cannot be fixed anymore, but with a little help, he will be able to live his life in peace.
We are raising funds to create the first Horse Sanctuary in Bulgaria. Please help if you are able to:
Whilst we are fighting to finish reconstructions and open our “Franziska” clinic, we are planning and looking for support for our next big task – creating a place where horses with a sad destiny could take shelter.
Meanwhile, our first rescued horses – saved and kept by Nadia and Svetlio – the sweet Penny and Silencio, received wonderful gifts. They now have their own horse blankets to keep them from the wind and cold this winter. And also – a great de-wormer for a year in advance.
Our warmest thanks to Jodie Richers, Nancy & Rory Jones of Horses On Death Row for their kindness. We hope to help many horses together in the future.
Penny and Silencio – 6 months into care – healthy, happy, loved…
What is a Farm without a little pig in it?
We don’t know! Our Farm has one!!!
it is an honor and great joy for us to introduce you to Miss Lillemor, a young new inhabitant of the Farm, who is a representative of the Sus scrofa domesticus species!
The lovely Lillemor is a wonderful, amazing piglet – smart, social, kind, very curious and of course – hungry. She is about a month and a half old, but is already smarter than 10 dogs – an incredibly sweet and easy-going creature. She lived at Nadia’s for quite a while and all this time she used a newspaper for her toilet needs – from minute 1! Plus, she waited for Nadia to fall asleep so she can creep into her bed and cuddle at night!
Lillemor is a domestic pig – one of those who will live a short life in stench and darkness, just to be eaten up about Christmas time. She and her sister from the photos will not have the same destiny! The little sister has an adopter waiting and Lillemor is staying with us at the Farm – till the rest of her days.
In time, the Farm will provide a home not only to Lillemor the piglet, but also other farm animals. This way the kids who come to the shelter will learn about the animals, stoke a goat, cuddle a donkey, throw some corn to the chickens.
Especially for you, a touching video of Lillemor from her short stay at Stella and the poodles in the Sofia city center: