BENEFITING: HUMAN ANIMAL LIFE FOUNDATION
An article from a Tampa Tribune staff writer reports on the Miracle Ranch for Children and Animals, a program that has served the community well.:
"It was time to eat, and Frankie, a tiny pony with an inhospitable personality, was using his hooves to make room for himself at the food bowl.
Surrounding Frankie were towering, 1,500-pound camels, a few billy goats and several alpacas, which resemble small llamas.
The hungry camels, including an alpha male named Big Cash, could have stomped Frankie into the turf, but showed great restraint.
“Frankie, you better behave yourself, or you can’t stay with the group,” called Felicia Bass, 50, who handles the animals at Spring Lake Equestrian Center, a 27-acre ranch off Spring Lake Highway.
The camels are resting at the center between stints with the Picadilly Circus in Sarasota. In a fenced pasture away from the camels, 55 horses grazed peacefully. Many of them had been rescued from careers on the race track.
“More than 30 of the horses are true rescue cases from the sheriff’s office, or just people who couldn’t care for them anymore,” Bass said. “Some of them are off-the-track thoroughbreds that are forever lame. They’re long-term care cases.”
The land is not just a vacation spot for working animals or a retirement home for race horses. The center has also been the home of the Human Animal Life Foundation’s Miracle Ranch for Children and Animals.
Through the Miracle Ranch, Bass has conducted human-animal interaction therapy, often working with at-risk youth, some of whom have suffered severe abuse and had significant behavioral, mental and legal issues.
Read the whole article here: Spring Lake woman rescues camels, horses, wayward teens.
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