Five horses surrendered from Peterborough residence

  • Live and Let Live Farm volunteer Dot McCully from Chichester nuzzles up to one of the five horses rescued from a neglect situation in Peterborough Tuesday. “I was in love as soon as I saw him get off the truck,” McCully said.

  • Heather Evans of Live and Let Live Farm in Chichester tries to calm Razzmatazz after she was rescued from a farm in Peterborough Tuesday. The horse was in severe pain from laminitis and will be seen by a vet to try to save her. “One way or another, she’s not going to be in pain anymore,” Evans said.

  • Heather Evans of Live and Let Live Farm in Chichester tries to calm Razzmatazz after she was rescued from a farm in Peterborough Tuesday. The horse was in severe pain from laminitis and will be seen by a vet to try to save her. “One way or another, she’s not going to be in pain anymore,” Evans said.

  • Gergen, the mare and mother of the four other horses, stands at the Live and Let Live Farm in Chichester after being rescued from a farm in Peterborough Tuesday. Gergen was the most malnoursished but all the horses were suffering from thrush, a bacterial infection that occurs on the hoof of a horse, specifically in the region of the frog. The horses all had winter blankets and were found deep in mud. And one was suffering from laminitis and will be seen by a vet this week.

  • Razzmatazz, one of the five horses brought into the Live and Let Live Farm in Chichester Tuesday after being rescued from a Peterborough this past weekend. Police were notified after people noticed the animals all had blankets on last Sunday when the tempertures were close to 80 degrees and were sunk in mud. Razzmatazz had difficulty walking from laminitis and will be evaluted by a vet this week.

  • Bonne McHenry's horses grazing in their pasture last summer. (Courtesy Photo) Courtesy photo—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 4/27/2017 5:54:40 AM

Five horses were removed from a Peterborough property with various health issues Tuesday, and relocated to a rescue farm in Chichester.

The horses, owned by Bonne McHenry of Greenfield Road, were voluntarily relinquished to the state, and Live and Let Live Farm, a nonprofit volunteer rehabilitation rescue and sanctuary operation agreed to take in the animals and provide veterinary care for them.

The horses all have some amount of hoof issue, said Teresa Paradis, the founder and director of Live and Let Live Farm in a telephone interview Wednesday. The youngest horse, Razzmatazz, has a severe issue that requires it be medicated due to the pain, possibly caused by laminitis, an inflammatory condition affecting the feet of horses, also known as founder. This is the case that worries her the most, said Paradis, and Razzmatazz will be seeing a hoof specialist and getting X-rays in the coming days to determine whether the condition can be treated.

The oldest, GeeGee is underweight, said Paradis, likely due to bad teeth causing her to have difficulty eating. Some of the horses also have a fungus on their body caused by having blankets on their body for long periods of time. 

“She seemed like a nice woman that loved her animals, but just got in over her head and it became a neglectful situation,” said Paradis.

The Peterborough Police Department, state Department of Agriculture and state veterinarian’s office made an inspection of McHenry’s property and her horses after a passerby reported what they termed “deplorable conditions” to the Peterborough Police Department, said Peterborough Police Chief Scott Guinard in an interview with the Ledger-Transcript on Tuesday. 

On Monday, two technicians from the state veterinarian’s office joined Peterborough Corporal Craig Edsall to check on the horses and their condition. Police had obtained a search warrant, but McHenry voluntarily allowed them onto the property to inspect and photograph the animals.

On Tuesday, police returned with State Veterinarian Stephen K. Crawford. 

"We are not horse experts," said Guinard. "We have to rely on [the state veterinarian's] expertise in order to determine if there is abuse or neglect.”

McHenry surrendered her horses to Live and Let Live Farm.

“It’s a sad thing in one way, but ultimately it’s a happy ending,” said McHenry in an interview at her property on Tuesday, a few hours after her horses had been taken off the property. “I probably should have done it a few years ago, but it’s so hard to give up animals that you’ve loved for so long.”

Live and Let Live Farm is sanctuary for rescued animals, but they also seek to place rehabilitated animals in new permanent homes. 

The horses will have to undergo medical evaluations first, and the hoof issues may take a year or more to fully resolve, if any of them have resulted in abscesses. 

McHenry said she didn’t think things had gotten so bad -- she knew that her paddock had gotten muddy, she said, but she provided her horses with a steady diet of regular oats and hay.

McHenry said she has had her oldest mare, the thoroughbred GeeGee, since she was nine months old – almost 30 years. The other four horses she surrendered are all bred from GeeGee (named Anglo-Arab, ZaaZaa, TaaTaa, Shazzamm and Razzmatazz) and range in age from 18 to 11 years old. 

McHenry said at age 73, she believes that she is just no longer able to care for them at the level they should be. Though she said the way the process played out, coming from a complaint and ultimately having little choice in the outcome made the eventuality of having to give up her horses all the more difficult, she said she feels that Live and Let Live Farm is the best place for them to go to, now.

“I’m going to miss them terribly, but it’s the right thing to do, and it’s a great relief to me to know that they’re going to a place where they’re going to be taken care of,” said McHenry. 

And ultimately, said McHenry, it’s also in some ways a relief. She was spending as much as $1,500 a month on hay, feed, and someone to assist her in the physical work of caring for the horses. Though she still works, it was a significant financial burden, she said. She added that she’ll also likely downsize her house and property, now that she no longer needs the paddock space to support her horses.

“I’m 73, now,” said McHenry. “I have to face the fact that I can’t do what I used to anymore. It was time to say goodbye to those friends. I’m at peace with it.”

Peterborough police are still investigating the matter, though no charges have been filed as of Tuesday.

"We will stay in contact with the state vet's office to see how the animals progress," Guinard said.

Donations to Live and Let Live Farm can be made through PayPal through its website or by texting “HAY” to 71777. 


Ashley Saari can be reached at

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