Pony once with three legs defies the odds

AUBURN, Ala. — Wednesday, Pogo the ‘super pony’ graduated from Auburn. He didn’t walk across the stage at the Auburn Arena, but he did have his mortar board on outside the J.T. Vaughan Large Teaching Hospital as he graduated from physical rehabilitation.

Back in June, Shelley Jones, the Executive Director of Helping Horses Alabama rescued Pogo after a school bus driver said he was loose in a rural area in Bibb County.

Six months prior to that, Pogo and two other miniature horses were attacked by dogs. The two other horses were, killed, but the attack left Pogo with three legs. He was able to survive his experience for six months just on three legs but Jones said the outlook was grim when she first found him.

“I thought there is no way we can save this animal because he had such a horrific injury,” Jones said. “After we had him, we brought him home, cleaned him up like we always do with an animal. He bonded with us immediately, and we saw him ambulate on three legs in an amazing way.”

Jones wanted to do whatever she could to maximize Pogo’s will to fight life.

In June, Auburn’s Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery Service evaluated Pogo. They saw that the amputation left bone exposed without adequate soft tissue protection. The team revised his amputation site and soon after placed a temporary prosthetic leg on him, which he was reluctant to do. In July, he received his permanent prosthetic and has been going through intensive rehabilitation.

“Amputation is a pretty big deal in horses, particularly adult horses,” Dr. Lindsey Boone said.  “He had some things going for him like his incredible will to survive, how small he is and got over that traumatic episode in some way on his own.”

Jones hopes Pogo can become a therapy horse for children and adults with special needs, and his owner said the Superman design on his prosthetic fits him well.

Pogo’s prosthetic leg

“I do feel like he has super powers,” Jones said. “He is a super pony that has a huge, big personality in such a little package.”

If you are interested in learning more about Pogo’s journey or want to donate to his medical costs, please visit this website.

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