Monday, January 29, 2007

Rest for the Weary

Damn, dude, I so thought you were gonna make it. I'm very sad 2006 Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro had to be euthanized today.

Despite heroic measures to save his life after he pulled up lame in the Preakness, he lost the fight. Although I love animals in general, I can't say why hearing about his death has me so sad. I think because the whole world seemed to be rooting for him--sending cards and emails full of good wishes after his first surgery. We heard about his improbable recovery every step of the way--how he was making it despite the odds. And, of course, there was always the "what if" factor. How many races could this amazing horse have won if he hadn't been injured?

And, in fact, his injured leg did heal, but the strain it put on his other legs proved too much. He had serious inflammation in his other 3 hooves that would not heal. His vet said, β€œHe was just a different horse. You could see he was upset. That was the difference. It was more than we wanted to put him through.”

The positive thing to come out of this tragedy is the $1.2 million raised since early June for the Barbaro Fund. The money will go toward needed equipment such as an operating room table, and a raft and sling for use in pool recovery after surgeries.

β€œCertainly, grief is the price we all pay for love,” said Barbaro's co-owner Gretchen Jackson.

RIP big guy. I hope you're up there running like crazy. Maybe you and Seabiscuit are racing right now.

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