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This horse is risking his life by lying down too much

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Joe’s got everyone worried.

The 12-year-old draft horse, who was rescued from a meat auction, has a lot of ailments and tends to fall down a lot. It’s much easier for him to spend his days lying down, but he’s risking his life in the process.

Due to their size, horses’ lungs can fill up with fluid if they lay down for too long. They need to stand. And the more time they spend on the ground, the harder it is to get them back on their feet, which is part of Joe’s predicament: He’s lost muscle strength from lying down all the time, so when he falls, it’s hard for him to get back up, and that leads to even more time spent on the ground.

But Dog Tales’ co-owner Danielle and head horse handler Ilana are committed to doing whatever they can to help Joe get back on his feet. They believe this powerful animal still has some fight left in him. And if he’s not giving up, neither are they.

“One of the hardest things we have to deal with as animal caretakers is trying to decide for the animal when it’s time to help them,” Ilana says. “They can’t really tell us language so we need to interpret other things.”

Are they right? Does big Joe still have some fight left in him? We hope so, because there’s a lot of love (and a lot of apples) waiting on the other side. Watch the video above to find out!

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