Grace and Phillipe: A Draft Horse Love Story

Over the summer, we introduced you to Phillipe, a rescued Belgian who was underweight and spent. We’re pleased to be able to update you with the story of his — and his partner’s! — soft landing.

We met Phillipe in Horse Nation in July when the Belgian Draft was rescued from a slaughter sale by Horse Plus Humane Society (HPHS) in Tennessee. Phillipe was in rough shape with a body score of 3.

Phillipe at intake. Photo by Kisa Kavass.

HPHS director, Tawnee Preisner, just sent a thrilling update on Phillipe . . . and his love, Grace! Updates like this are the huge perk for researching and writing about rescues.

Tawnee shares: “Phillipe seemed depressed and very antisocial when we rescued him. He would stand in a corner of the pasture alone — for hours — resisting interaction with the other horses. He would just stand there. This went on for weeks. We were very worried about him and felt so bad for this big beautiful boy. He needed someone to rescue him – emotionally — and give him the love he so desperately needed.”

Then Grace arrived . . .

“We rescued Grace from an auction a month after Phillipe. She had a lot of health problems. We weren’t sure she was going to survive. We noticed that Phillipe noticed Grace when she arrived at Horse Plus. Maybe she reminded him of an old friend, maybe a team partner. It is possible they could’ve even known each other. They were both used up Draft horses, lame, skinny and no longer wanted by their previous owners.

Grace in July. Photo by Kisa Kavass.

“We allowed Phillipe and Grace to quarantine together. A miracle! Phillipe no longer stood alone in the corner of the pasture! He and Grace grazed side-by-side . . . together . . . constantly,” added Tawnee.

Grace and Phillipe grazing. Photo courtesy of Horse Plus Humane Society.

“Both horses were in critical health condition. We worked with multiple veterinarians to help the horses through their rehab. Our fear of losing Grace was amplified by our fear for Phillipe. The possibility of Phillipe without Grace was unbearable for our staff. We continue to work with our veterinarians. Finally the big boy and big girl started to improve.”

The Horse Plus staff was thrilled when an out-of-state veterinarian contacted them about adopting both Grace and Phillipe. They were especially happy to know that the now bonded pair could live out their lives together “with someone who knew how to care for them — emotionally and physically.”

Grace and Phillipe with their new owner. Photo courtesy of Horse Plus Humane Society.

I supposed rescuers endure the hardship because they provide the chance of this kind of happy outcome. Thank you, Tawnee, for sending this wonderful news to me.

As a freelance writer, I my reimbursement is based on the number of views any given story receives. I will be donating what I make on this story to HPHS, so please, share the tale of Grace and Phillipe with your friends. Not only will it go to a good cause financially, but also it will help shed light on the benefits of rescue.

Grace and Phillipe with their new owner. Photo courtesy of Horse Plus Humane Society.