It's been quite the journey for one New York City carriage horse, a horse that now calls western Massachusetts his home after an accident in Central Park.
Arthur has taken sanctuary at a farm in Palmer, a place where horses can retire, or in this case, stay fit for a second chance in life.
Arthur is a 10 year old Percheron draft horse, standing over seven feet tall at the head. He has made his home at the Blue Star Equiculture, a non-profit organization in Palmer dedicated to giving horses in need a place to live and stay active.
"We typically take horses that have nowhere to go. They are not healthy or sound or they are elderly. Those are the horses that end up staying on the farm here," said Pamela Rickenbach with Blue Star Equiculture.
Arthur had a home just weeks ago, working as a carriage horse among the bright lights and packed streets of New York City, only now there's no home to go back to.
Arthur became uncomfortable after a resident opened an umbrella in Central Park, resulting in an accident that injured three people.
Luckily, Blue Star was started for carriage horses just like Arthur and is home to dozens today.
"We have our horses in herds and we kind of let them figure out what role they want to play in that system," Rickenbach added.
The good news is that Arthur is happy and healthy. Even better news? It won't be long before he is on the road again to his new home.
"He's really smart, super smart. He's wicked athletic. I wouldn't put it past him to be able to jump a fence," Rickenbach explained.
Rickenbach told Western Mass News the 10 year old is in the final stages of being adopted.
Blue Star has taken in 700 horses on this farm. About 500 have been adopted, free of charge, in just nine years. She said that it can be difficult to find homes to support these horses and it's the bond shared with each one over time that has made her the person she is today.
"The fact that we've sustained ourself in a really grassroots way. We've made it and I'm really proud of it," Rickenbach said.
The farm is always accepting visitors and donations to help keep these horses happy and healthy. For more information or to find out how to get involved, you can call (413) 289-9787, visit Blue Star's website, or visit their Facebook page.
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