When Mila, a curly-haired wild mustang was originally found on the Navajo Reservation in Gray Mountain, Arizona, she had just lost her mother. It was 2018, and her entire herd had fallen victim to severe drought conditions. According to Jennifer Brumbaugh, the executive director of Healing Hearts Animal Rescue located in Cave Creek, Arizona, “The summer of 2018 was the worst drought Arizona had had for 10 years.”
Effects of Drought
Needless to say, little Mila, who was originally called Coco, was one of very many that had felt the effects of the fatal drought. “Over 200 horses had died from the drought, and that’s where these little ones were found,” continued Brumbaugh. Knowing that they couldn’t leave the little horse alone, Healing Hearts immediately took her into their care.
Mila Needed A Mother
As you can imagine, Mila was in a terrible state at the time of her rescue. “She was just a bag of bones when she came. It’s truly a miracle she even survived,” recalls Brumbaugh. Brumbaugh realized that Mila needed a mother in her life if she was going to thrive.
Bonding With Mystery
The volunteers at the rescue decided that it would be best to attempt to pair Mila with another horse. The horse, whose name was Mystery, had just lost her own baby, so Healing Hearts figured that they might be able to help one another heal. Luckily, they were right, and the pair bonded almost immediately. “They were both in a time of recovery, and a time of rehabilitation. They just found each other, and I really think it saved them both,” explained Brumbaugh.
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When Mila went outside for the first time, she started galloping around in excitement, much to the surprise of everyone watching. “Her personality just got bigger and bigger from there,” said Brumbaugh. As time continued on, Mila began to spend more and more time with Mystery, causing her confidence to grow. Soon enough, it was time for Mila to make another friend.