Due to generous donations from many people, George Leavitt was able to purchase the 7 starving horses reported on in our previous article. This is the first step towards establishing the Hilltop Refugio / Jaltemba Equine Education Project (J.E.E.P.).

This past Saturday, January 5, the animals were picked up and transported to a property close to Los Compadres Restaurant in La Peñita. An assessment was made concerning a colt to be transported separately due to its poor condition and the fear that it would be injured by the other horses. One of the adult horses was suffering from such severe malnutrition, that he fell down in the trailer during the move. The horse was unable to stand on its own and had to be pulled out of the horse trailer. Once out, it was unable to stand even after numerous attempts. Dr. Eladio Tello, a local vet, was called to help check the horse that was literally on death’s door. He was treated with electrolytes and vitamins with an IV. After a long period of time he was able to be hand fed by Loretta Leavitt. After being coaxed to his feet, his muscles then needed to be massaged in order to bring back circulation into his legs. He was then led up to George’s stable where he and the colt are being kept due to their need of more constant observation and care.


All of the horses will need extensive medical attention due to ticks, sores and parasites. Many thanks to Dr. Tello and volunteers for donating their time and expertise. There is still a need for donations to help feed and treat these defenseless animals. Any support would be greatly appreciated.

Donations can be made in person at Los Compadres Restaurant or via PayPal. Visit the Hilltop Refugio / Jaltemba Equine Education Project (J.E.E.P.) webpage for more information.

Written by Barbara & John Webber

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