What can you say about someone like Pat Wagner? You can't change the world, but you can make it a better place, one horse at a time, and that is exactly what Pat is all about. Nobody works longer or harder to make unwanted hay burners happier and healthier.
At the Rainier Equine Hoof Recovery Center, Inc. Pat has a passion for saving the lives of challenged animals. As an equine hoof rehabilitation practitioner, she works tirelessly to repair the lives of equines (horses donkeys and mules of all sizes) with hoof ailments that would have, in many cases, sent them to an early grave.
Even though Pat has arthritis in her spine she works on the hooves of many horses, nearly every day. Her husband Rich, a veteran, feeds the horses, cares for the property and has stacked thousands of hay bales even though he’s an amputee.
Pat’s income is earned trimming horses to go barefoot for her many customers of her business, Heel First Landings, Inc.
However, Rich has been unemployed since January of 2011, and still that hasn’t kept them from continuing take in equines in dire situations, which number up to 20 now, along with caring for their own 5 horses. Donations help, as well as the proceeds from the DVD they published which teaches owners to trim the hooves of their own equines.
Some equines arrive with behavioral issues, starved or so scared of humans that hoof care has been impossible for them. Kindness and training, no matter how long it takes, becomes part of their hoof repair program. Many wonderful horses have been saved from death, or worse yet, a horrible trip to the slaughter plants in Canada or Mexico.
Pat believes they will find a way to continue helping them, no matter what the situation or how hard they have to work. They do all this on only 10 acres. If you ask Pat or Rich why they put so much effort into such an expensive endeavor, both will tell you that the gratifying feeling of watching a horse that previously could not walk, take off running across the field, mane and tail flying, is worth every back ache, every dollar and every long day. For the past 10 years, both Pat and Rich have devoted most their time and income to saving the lives of these amazing animals.