When a teenager and her mother decided to take a detour on a rural road, they discovered a starving horse who showed signs of physical abuse. Determined to rescue the animal, the young woman took it upon herself to endure a long trek back to her home with the horse (video below).
Kelsey Allonge and her mother were driving to a routine swap meet in rural Illinois. The young woman's mother decided that day to take an alternative route, a spontaneous decision with fateful results, Shareably reports.
Driving along the new route, they saw a horse grazing on a patch of grass next to the road. The horse, named Sonny, was in horrible shape.
"She just looked like a skeleton," Kelsey recalled.
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Sonny had evidently run away from her owner and was clearly on the brink of starvation. Emaciated and weak, her skin clung tightly to her ribcage. Kelsey said the sight of the ailing horse filled her with "overwhelming sadness."
Sonny was scarred by whip marks, her back knees raw and eyes so swollen she could hardly see. The horse had been physically mistreated and neglected to the point of near-death.
"What kind of person can do that to an animal, you know?" Kelsey said. "Willingly going to bed every night know that she's out there starving."
Sadly, many horses are abused in the U.S. Horses are the third most likely animals to be abused, right after dogs and cats, according to The Humane Society.
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Both Kelsey and her mother agreed they could not leave Sonny to die on the side of the road. The horse refused to get into their trailer and promptly fell in a ditch, indicating she had given up on living.
"We decided that there wasn't anything else to do but walk her home," Kelsey said.
The compassionate teenager decided to escort the feeble horse all the way back to her home. The distance was 9 miles, and it took them four hours to get home.
Reflecting on the physical strain of walking such a long distance, Kelsey said she hardly minded because "my pain wasn't comparable to what she was in."
After the long journey, Kelsey brought Sonny into her family's barn, where the exhausted horse slept for a full five days. Kelsey was by her side every night, wanting the creature to have loving company there while she recovered.
Sonny managed to pull through and recover, becoming a member of the family. Kelsey mother asserts that the horse shares a special bond with her daughter.
"She knows me as food, but she knows Kelsey as love," she said.
Kelsey believes it was destiny that she and her mother happened to drive past Sonny that day.
"We were on that road for a reason," Kelsey concluded. "I believe it was to get this horse."