This is called “True Love”!

The first step he took out of his stall was the hardest. Monty, a horse locked away in a filthy stall for years, did not seem to understand what was going on. He was hesitant and frightened about coming out of his makeshift prison, where the only attention he received was when his owner threw in some hay, food, and water. His only friends were the flies that circled and landed on his gaunt frame. When his rescuer, Travis Underwood, first saw Monty, he didn’t know what to expect when he opened the gate.

The horse had been badly bitten by flies, and he had not received any general care. He was not let out of their stalls, had not been exercised, and was denied hoof care, vet care and basic grooming. Underwood found a sanctuary to take Monty. Monty had a tendency to hide in the dark corner of his stall and poke his head out. First, his rescuers had to train him to get him out of his stall and off the property. The more time Underwood spent with Monty, the more they connected. Underwood was gaining his trust. “He eventually let me brush him, so he was eager to learn and eager for a bond,” Underwood said. “I knew it would be a lot of work to get him halter trained,” Underwood added. “I liked the challenge, and I could see that he needed someone. He needed an advocate, so we went with it. My wife grew up showing Arabs and she really bonded with him too.” It took two months in the fall of 2014 to get him halter trained and loaded into a trailer. “The more we worked with him, we knew he would be part of the family,” Underwood said. “We couldn’t let him go.” “To this day he follows me around everywhere,” Underwood said. “I’m always trying to teach him something new.” Monty is very curious and always wants to meet everyone. He buddies up with all the animals but his favorite is Herman, the rescued mule. “Monty is our big puppy dog,” Underwood said. “When people come over, he’s first at the gate to meet them. We take him for walks around the neighborhood. He likes that.”

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