‘The biggest mistake ever’: rider who spent years searching for horse brings him home thanks to Facebook

  • A rider who had given up hope of ever finding a horse she had sold to Ireland but did so thanks to Facebook said the “biggest mistake we’ve ever made has been rectified”.

    A relative of CJ Diamond’s owner recently found a post written by Charlee Cummins, the Irish draught’s former owner, some years ago. When his owner decided to sell soon afterwards, “Dylan” and Charlee were reunited.

    “We’ve got him back and he’ll never go anywhere again now,” Charlee told H&H. “I can’t believe it.”

    Charlee said Dylan came from Ireland as an unbacked youngster some 13 years ago, when Charlee’s mother Sandra Gear had travelled there looking for a 14.2hh for her daughter, who was then 10.

    “We did a bit of everything,” Charlee said. “Nothing affiliated but we did dressage and jumping and my younger sister sometimes rode him; he was a family horse.

    “Then for unforeseen reasons, we had to send him to Ireland while we sorted things out.”

    The family had to sell Dylan, and despite their efforts, they lost touch. Charlee attempted to track him, to no avail.

    “Nothing ever came of it, including a post I’d put in a Facebook group called ‘Trace my horse Ireland’,” she said. “A friend of Mum’s in Ireland was keeping an eye out too and my mum had a conversation with her, saying she thought we’d have to give up hope — then the next evening, I got a message from a girl saying ‘I think I’ve got the horse you’re looking for’.”

    Charlee said Dylan’s owner’s aunt had been scrolling through old posts on the group when she spotted Charlee’s.

    “I was in complete shock and thought it couldn’t be true, but then she sent a picture and it was him,” she said. “The girl was kind enough to let us go over and visit him, in February. I was just happy he had such a nice home, but then it turned out she was going to sell him, and he came home just over a week ago.”

    Dylan, who is now 17, settled into his new yard quickly.

    “I think he remembers us,” Charlee said. “When we first saw him, he didn’t react much but then he pricked his ears and started banging the door. When we used to have him, he’d whinny when he heard our footsteps, and he does that now, before he even sees you.”

    Charlee urged anyone in a similar position not to give up hope.

    “It was just amazing,” she said. “I’d thought about it happening so many times but never thought it would, and it’s like we’ve got a closer bond now.

    “Letting him go was the biggest mistake we’ve ever made but it’s been rectified now.”

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