The owner of the 13.1hh black Welsh Section C pony in H&H’s latest classified advertising campaign had ever reason to be “very emotional” when she discovered he featured on the full-page ad.
In the picture, taken by a freelance photographer nearly two years ago, Glebedale Euros (Euro) looks in peak condition.
However, owner Selene Regan says he is a “miracle pony”. In the past four years he’s overcome liver disease, being kicked in the face and falling into a freezing swimming pool to win his section at this year’s National Pony Society prelim dressage championships.
Ms Regan bought Euro as a two-year-old from as a project pony to bring on.
A year after she bought him he needed a major post castration operation.
Then after a winter of light work, he was ready for his first show where he won an M&M class, but Ms Regan noticed he was “a little flat”. Vets discovered a liver issue and Euro was off again for six months with treatment.
By 2010 he was back in work and doing well as a four year-old when he got kicked in the face by one of Selene’s other ponies.
Shortly after this the liver problem returned, but this time it was more severe and vets gave Euro just three to six months to live.
“I was determined not to give up,” Ms Regan told H&H. “So I found an equine nutrionist consultant.”
Through careful management of Euro’s nutrition and workload, he recovered and was ready for his first dressage test.
Euro was in work for the whole year for the first time in 2013, qualifying for Equifest and the Sunshine Tour Championship where he won the intro dressage championship. He also qualified for the southeast dressage championship at Hickstead the following May and the NPS dressage championship the following April.
“The vets did not believe it was possible for him to recover as his liver was so damaged, so it was a miracle,” Selene told H&H.
But last year, eight weeks before the H&H picture was taken, disaster struck again.
In March 2014 he escaped from his field and fell into the yard swimming pool.
“The pool was 11ft deep and it was a very frosty night. He was lucky not to freeze or drown,” said Ms Regan.
He survived, but injured his leg.
“The leg swelled up so much he couldn’t lie down for four days,” she added.He’s since recovered fully and went to the NPS dressage championship in April — winning his prelim section and finishing fourth in the supreme.
“He’s been incredible throughout, always a fighter,” said Ms Regan.