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EQ Life April magazine: Through hell or high water

The HHH herd walking through floodwaters in March 2021. credit Hunter Horse Haven

The herd of horses heading through the floodwaters. © Hunter Horse Haven


Through Hell or High Water

By Ellie Jolley

When heavy rain lashed the eastern coast of Australia in late March, the floodwaters rose and a horse sanctuary near Newcastle found itself in deep trouble.

Nestled on the coast at Nelson’s Bay in NSW, Hunter Horse Haven provides a place of safety and recovery for neglected horses that need a home. However, it still resembles more of a swamp than a peaceful place of healing following the devastating floods that inundated the coastline. Even recently, 22 horses from its herd were still stranded atop a small hill, surrounded by murky but now slowly receding floodwater.

Founder of Hunter Horse Haven, Debbie Barber, says the rain wouldn’t stop falling. “It started with torrential rain, lightning, thunder… the whole caboodle. The rain just didn’t stop for five days. And I was thinking, ‘please stop!’ The horses were just standing in the paddock shivering even when they’d been rugged with winter coats, because the rain was just so torrential – nonstop day and night…” 


Read the full article here in the April issue of Equestrian Life!



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