Rescued horse owners need help with vet costs
By J.J. Kindred | (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Star, the blind horse that fell into a sinkhole and was freed by Blount County firefighters and other rescuers Sunday evening, remains at Countryside Veterinarian Services in Louisville.
“We went up there to the vet today, and Star is expected to stay for an extra seven days,” said Jack Estep, who co-owns Star and several horses with his wife, Jennifer, at 3881 Quarry Road in Louisville.
“Her enzyme level came down to 90,000, and it should be at 350,” he said. “If we take her off the IVs, her kidneys will fail and she will pass on.”
Star, a quarter horse mare, fell into the sinkhole on property next door to theirs late Sunday afternoon. She was rescued by Blount County firefighters and rescue workers, as well as several veterinarians called on the scene, in a four-hour operation.
Star’s health is not all that the Esteps have to worry about. Costs for nursing Star back to health are rocketing, despite the efforts of the veterinarians to keep the costs down.
They are asking the public for help with Star’s veterinary bills. They have started a fund through the Countryside Veterinary Services for people to make donations.
“The cost was at the $2,000 mark and it is still climbing,” Estep said. “The cost is going to be phenomenal. This is the most expensive free horse I’ve ever owned. I’ve tried to stay positive and focused, but this pretty much blew me out of the water.”
To make matters even more intense for the Esteps, they recently found out that the lymphoma (Hodgkin’s Disease) that Estep overcame has returned for a second time, and he has to undergo a bone marrow transplant next week.
“They laid the news on me and took me off the work force,” said Estep, who formerly worked at DENSO as a maintenance technician. “I’m fighting this and I just had a port put in me. I’m just trying to save my horse.
“Anything people want to donate is appreciated,” Estep continued. “It might take me 10 years to get it paid, but they are very understanding about that. The doctors were kind enough not to charge me for the rescue. They donated all their time and that helps out a lot.”