A Miracle for Midnite: the little horse with a prosthetic leg

Midnite the miniature horse wearing his equine prosthetic leg.
Midnite the miniature horse wearing his equine prosthetic leg. | Source
Bob Williams runs Ranch Hand Rescue in Argyle, Texas.
Bob Williams runs Ranch Hand Rescue in Argyle, Texas. | Source
Midnite will never be neglected again, thanks to Bob Williams and Ranch Hand Rescue's benefactors.
Midnite will never be neglected again, thanks to Bob Williams and Ranch Hand Rescue's benefactors. | Source

Midnite the miniature horse gets a second chance at life with an artificial leg.

When Bob WIlliams first saw the little black horse, he couldn't imagine a sadder situation. "And we get the worst of the worst," said Williams, who runs Ranch Hand Rescue, a farm animal rescue and rehabilitation center in Argyle, Texas.

The little horse was malnourished and miserable. Midnite had been neglected by his owners. To make matters worse, Midnite was born with a deformity in one of his back legs. The deformed leg is much shorter than the other three and does not have a hoof or a coffin bone.

Midnite could scarcely walk at all. Lying down was a problem also, because a horse needs four good legs in order to stand back up from a prone position. Midnite spent most of his days standing in one place, shifting his weight from one of his three good legs to another, and trying to avoid walking or moving.

Midnite's deformity, combined with his malnourishment and neglect, left him confined to one spot, depressed and with a broken spirit. Williams, an animal lover to the core, feared he'd have to put Midnite down.

Lane Farr of ProsthetiCare in Fort Worth, Texas, designed this artificial leg for Midnite the miniature horse as a gift from the heart.
Lane Farr of ProsthetiCare in Fort Worth, Texas, designed this artificial leg for Midnite the miniature horse as a gift from the heart. | Source
Lilly, a double amputee, shares a moment with Midnite.
Lilly, a double amputee, shares a moment with Midnite. | Source

ProsthetiCare steps in to make a miracle happen for Midnite

Little did Williams or Midnite know, some kind-hearted strangers were about to step in with a miracle for Midnite. Lane Farr, a prosthesis technician at ProsthetiCare in nearby Fort Worth, Texas, had heard of Midnite's plight. Although ProsthetiCare is a business dedicated to designing, manufacturing and fitting prosthetic limbs on humans, Farr had a hunch he could help the little horse. He approached Tim and Sharon Goldberg, the husband-wife team who owns ProsthetiCare, about taking Midnite on as a charity case.

ProsthetiCare is a small, family-owned business with only eight employees. Devout Christians, the Goldbergs make a point of taking on charity cases and are happy to do so. However, they must pick and choose their pro bono work carefully in order to keep their bottom line in the black. "We had to make sure that we could afford it," said Sharon Goldberg. "There was also the fact that we had never made a prosthesis for a horse before," added Tim Goldberg. Fitting animals with artificial limbs is an extremely new field. It has been attempted only a few times and has not always met with success.

The Goldbergs decided to take a chance on Midnite and Farr. Farr delved into a comprehensive study of equine anatomy and began designing an artificial leg for the horse, while Williams and Ranch Hand Rescue fed and cared for Midnite, giving him plenty of nutritious food, love and attention, bringing him up to his proper strength and weight.

As expected, Farr found that designing an artificial leg for a horse was a process of trial and error. He designed a prototype, fit it to Midnight, then tweaked it to fit more accurately. When he brought the prosthesis to Ranch Hand Rescue for only the second fitting, he and Williams decided to allow Midnite to attempt to walk with it, which was something they had not attempted at the first fitting. They were simply hoping Midnite would hobble around a bit to show them what improvements and adjustments still needed to be made to the horse's prosthesis.

Doris Roberts, five-time Emmy winner best known for her work on the hit TV show "Everybody Loves Raymond," is a supporter of Midnite and Ranch Hand Rescue.
Doris Roberts, five-time Emmy winner best known for her work on the hit TV show "Everybody Loves Raymond," is a supporter of Midnite and Ranch Hand Rescue. | Source
Midnite is an inspriation to amputees and the physically disabled.
Midnite is an inspriation to amputees and the physically disabled. | Source

Midnite's Happy Ending

What happened next far exceeded Williams' and Farr's expectations. They had hoped that at best Midnight would take a few steps, but instead he took to the new leg immediately and began joyfully running about. It was captured on video (see videos below) and is guaranteed to bring a tear to even the coldest person's eyes. As the little horse that was once considered a lost cause began frolicking about, you can hear the emotion in Bob Williams' voice as he says "Look at him! Oh Midnite, look at him go!" and "Look at him go! Oh God, it's just amazing!"

You could say that Midnite got his happy ending. However, his story is far from over. Midnite is now an international celebrity who has been featured in news reports and TV shows around the world. He is a permanent resident of the Ranch Hand Rescue facility, where he is doted on and treated as the special little pet that he is. Visitors come from far and wide to tour the facility and meet Midnite. Midnite also makes special trips to call on disabled children in the area. For example, this summer he was an honored guest at the Scottish Rite Children's Hospital summer camp, a camp for children with physical disabilities and other medical needs. Midnite has become the special friend of many physically disabled children, disabled veterans and amputees, who he inspires with his charm and spirit.

MORE PHOTOS AFTER THE VIDEOS, BELOW.

Source

Help Out, Donate or Learn More

Ranch Hand Rescue provides housing, food and medical care to farm and ranch animals suffering from neglect and starvation. At any given time they care for around 100 animals, including horses, cows, pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, turkey and ducks. They are in need of monetary donations, in-kind donations, volunteers, foster families and adoptive families. Ranch Hand Rescue is a registered 501C3 public charity. Donations are tax deductible. To see some heartwarming before and after photos of rescued animals, learn more about Ranch Hand Rescue, donate to these kind-hearted folks or schedule a tour of the facility, visit www.ranchhandrescue.org.


Midnite visiting campers at a summer camp for disabled children.
Midnite visiting campers at a summer camp for disabled children. | Source
A blind girl uses her sense of touch to "see" Midnite.
A blind girl uses her sense of touch to "see" Midnite. | Source
Children flock to Midnite.
Children flock to Midnite. | Source

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Comments 11 comments

Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

Oh, how very amazing and sweet. I love your hub name, as you are Smart and Fun. Excellent write here. In His Love, Faith Reaper


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

Oh what a wonderful read and here's to so many more by you.

Eddy.


SmartAndFun profile image

SmartAndFun 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks Faith Reaper and Eddy for reading and commenting. I find this horse and the story of the people who helped him so inspiring. Bob Williams has kindly provided me with more photos, which I have now added to my article. I hope you'll enjoy them as much as I did!


Doodlehead profile image

Doodlehead 4 years ago from Northern California

What a tear-jerker fabulous story. Wonderful story.


SmartAndFun profile image

SmartAndFun 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks Doodlehead, I really enjoyed writing this one. I'm glad you enjoyed reading it! I'm so glad Midnite is a happy little fella these days. He has come such a long way!


2besure profile image

2besure 4 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

Great hub. There should be tougher laws for people who neglect and mistreat animals. I am so glad someone saw value in Midnight. We are much too quick to put down animals that are not perfect! Voted up, Tweeted and FB!


SmartAndFun profile image

SmartAndFun 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks so much for sharing this hub, 2besure. I think the downturned economy has made just getting by extremely difficult for many folks, and animals suffer as a result. It is difficult to give pets up, and often is even more difficult to place livestock. There are not enough places like Ranch Hand Rescue that are willing and able to take farm animals. Thanks for reading, sharing and commenting!


loseraspie profile image

loseraspie 3 years ago from USA

Aw Midnight's so cute. He looks like my aunt's horse.


SmartAndFun profile image

SmartAndFun 3 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks loseraspie, I appreciate you reading the hub and also following me.


Writer Faux profile image

Writer Faux 3 years ago

I will pray for Midnite. He is a nice pony who has always been nice to others. I hope Midnite finds love and success in his pony life, and a nice person to brush his soft pony hair and feed him fresh organic baby carrots.


SmartAndFun profile image

SmartAndFun 3 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you Writer Faux. Midnite is a nice little pony and certainly deserves the pony happiness he is enjoying at his new home.

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