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Rescue cob jumps for joy in his new life

A neglected rescue horse found in an appalling state is now a show jumping star after a remarkable turnaround.

Bertie arrived in the care of our Burford rehoming centre horrifically malnourished, covered in scabs, riddled with lice, suffering from strangles – a respiratory infection – and with overgrown feet.

Understandably, the suffering his poor cob had endured had made him untrusting of people, too.

When Bertie arrived in our care in January 2012, he was terribly malnourished and suffering with a number of health issues.

But now, things couldn’t be more different for the five-year-old after Blue Cross nursed him back to health, taught him meaning of human kindness and found him a loving new home.

He is now flourishing in his home with Kerry Alexander, where he has been since November 2012, and he has become a “superb” all-round riding horse with a bright future ahead.

Jessica Parkes, Horse Care Groom at Burford, where Bertie – then called Emmett – spent nine months recovering, said:  “Bertie was very nervous and difficult to catch so needed lots of training to build on his confidence. He progressed well with his training whilst at the centre.

“Kerry backed him out in the home, and is doing amazingly with him. He is a far cry from the timid, skinny little youngster that came into the Blue Cross.”

Bertie, Blue Cross horse after our care

(Above: Bertie after he had recovered from his health problems and had put on weight)

After a remarkable transformation, Bertie is now an impressive events horse

“He has flourished into a superb all round riding horse with bags of potential. Kerry has been taking him out to lots of competitions and he has been doing amazingly.”

Despite only taking on Bertie as a companion horse, Kerry has not only trained him to be ridden but he is also showing great promise in dressage and show jumping.

He has already participated in show jumping events and will be making his debut at the prestigious British Eventing challenge next year.

Kerry said: “Bert is a very talented pony and a natural at dressage. We have lessons with Polly Williamson, who was a top event rider, and she adores Bert and can't get over how correct his jump is. He has become the darling of our riding club.

“When I'm out competing, people can't help but smile at us - either looking at his fab feathers, or wondering what we are doing at such an event. We soon show them what this little cob can do!”

Cobs are a type rather than a breed of horse. Usually any size from 12 hands tall up to 16 hands tall, they are sturdily built and come in any colour.

They are hardy animals, designed for the UK’s temperate climate with good coats and a capacity to survive on poorer grazing.

Cobs are renowned for their versatility. Commonly assumed to be sedate and sensible, a fit cob can equally be forward going, fast, fiery and fun.

They will take most disciplines in their stride and are often capable jumpers.

Blue Cross has been inundated with cobs of all ages and sizes in recent years.

Many have been rescued from lives of neglect and suffering and now deserve one-to-one care and attention from loving new owners.

If you think you could give one of our beautiful cobs a loving home, click here 

— Page last updated 18/11/2016