Fireworks to blame for death of Milton horse


CBS, By Greg Dingrando, July 15, 2013


22848432_BG1Fireworks are being blamed for the death of a horse in Milton, and one owner is pushing for a new law to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

He’s calling it Liberty’s Law, named after his current horse he said has suffered years of abuse from neighbors, including the use of fireworks.

Horse owner Tim Enloe said Liberty used to roam the pasture night and day, but now she spends nearly all of her time in the garage right next to the house.

“She’s going to be scared for the rest of her life on the very property she took her first breath at because of abuses by some local kids,” said Enloe.

Abuse he said he has video of everything from kids yelling at her to fireworks found in the pasture where she should be grazing.

And that’s just his horse.

Just a few weeks ago, on the Fourth of July, a horse in the same community was spooked so badly inside its barn that it ran into a wall and broke its own neck.

It’s something Enloe said Liberty’s Law possibly could have prevented.

“If Liberty’s Law had been presented and enforced, who’s to say that the horse who died recently might still be alive,” said Enloe.

Liberty’s Law aims to punish those committing abuse and educate the community on how to act around horses.

Enloe said he’s tried to present his ideas to the city but claims he’s been blocked. CONTINUED... Read more of this article and watch the Video – CLICK HERE

To learn more about Liberty’s Law and to sign a petition to show support, go to


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AUTHOR: Jerry Finch
  • If Liberty had a companion, she might have the confidence to live like a normal horse again. Horses are HERD animals, and do not feel happy or secure without equine companions. Even a mini would help. The owner should study horse psychology so he’d understand the importance of his mare having an equine companion. Human companionship, no matter how rewarding the partnership is for the human, cannot replace a horse’s need for equine companionship. No horse should ever have to live alone.

    July 16, 2013
    • sherriey

      you are very right. another confident horse can help her regain her confidence and hopefully she can and will venture out again.

      July 16, 2013
  • Alice Forshaw

    I know how it goes with fireworks. I have neighbors right next to us that do them also. They know the horses are here but continue to do it. I have lived here for 12 years and every year its the same thing. Not only one time a year but all holidays and whenever they want to shoot some. It really gets on my nerves and the horses also. I have tried everything even the law but that doesn’t work either. It is so sad that horses have to go thru this kind of abuse and to me that what it is animal abuse.

    July 16, 2013
    • sherriey

      ya know….desensitizing them by using a gun fire audible CD or tape would work. playing every day…first on a low volume then as the horses become immune to the sound…gradually increase the level.
      and you say…”How do you know this works?”…
      well…i live right next door to a gun range. my horses are only feet away from the noise. they have shoots every weekend with constant gun-fire from all kinds of guns…including shotguns (BOOM!) to rapid fire on full auto! now, my friends, that is loud….louder then mere firecrackers!
      and i too have the neighborhood punks…even out here in the boonies…every yr, for any reason, they come by and throw firecracker into my horse pasture…all summer long!
      ya know what? not one of my horses spook. they just continue to eat….never lift their heads….totally ignore the idiots and their sad sick effort to harm, scare, spook or abuse my horses.
      man….it must be so frustrating to them.
      dam stupid punks!
      oh…and guess what i did once during hunting season….i rode one out into the field and shot a deer off her back with a shotgun! she never flinched…and even dragged it up to the barn for me!

      so…if my nine can live next to a gun club and just go about grazing without any reaction to gunfire….then a owner could desensitize their horse(s) to firecrackers.
      take care of your own…don’t expect the law to do it.

      July 16, 2013
  • Sue in Indiana

    Living alone doesn’t excuse abuse by the boys or fireworks leftovers in pastures. Companions also doesn’t take care of the fear. My Horses (3) are still startled the 2 dogs are scared to death for at least 2 weeks while idiots fire off fireworks at all hours. It could have been 2 horses in a barn with broken necks for all you know.

    July 16, 2013
    • sherriey

      you are right also. i too had dogs go after my horses. i once had to shoot 2 that were on one of my foals. (sorry dog lovers…but!!!! i take care of my own and had permission from the sheriff.)
      then along came a palomino App mare by the name of Dusty. i bought her as a short yearling. all was fine until about 4 yrs ago. a deer wandered into the pasture she was in…instead of flight…she fought… (poor little deer…but she smelled like a wild thing)she attacked the deer, in her mind she was protecting her herd, and killed it…dead! it looked like it had been hit by a truck! she even bit it and tore out the hair! it had so many broken bones…it was so sad. since then we have had more trouble with dogs. i found the owners but they refused to keep them on their property and let them run..(there is a leash law here)…one day they went after the horses…Dusty did start to run away…but after the rest of the herd was ahead of her…she wheeled and attacked them. you have never seen such a look on those dogs faces..(she associated them with coyotes…which we have a bad problem with here…they are 80# coyotes!!!!!)…the dogs tried to escape but were too far into the pasture…she killed them!
      oh well!
      the owners called the police…but they were told i had a right to protect my horses…(er…Dusty had the right…)
      she is not your average “BLONDE”…she is a remarkable mare!

      July 16, 2013
  • Debbie Tracy

    Yes, I do agree BUT I also feel the animal cruelty laws in this country or certain States including the State I live in are non existent, there needs to be stronger laws and follow through it is much needed has been for decades… So I understand his frustration but I do think having a companion for Liberty might help a lot????

    July 16, 2013
  • BlessUsAll

    I agree with Elaine.

    Hope everyone signs the petition at the Liberty’s Law website.

    I forwarded it to several friends who, sad to say, don’t subscribe to Jerry’s blog.

    July 16, 2013
  • JanSchultz

    It is sweet that these people have opened their garage and yard to their horse understanding her plight. Unfortuntaely, some people discover that they can easily spook a horse and then do take pleasure watching its reactions. Yes, there are animal cruelty laws, but horses being intentionally spooked can cause dire consequences for humans and animals alike. Intentionally spooking a horse such as driving up alongside a horse or horses being ridden and honk their horn, or jumping out from behind a wall, etc. And being with another horse will not change how a horse responds to being intentionally or unintentionally spooked, it will just change the intensity if the horses are together.

    Maybe we should push for “equine companionship laws.”

    July 16, 2013
  • Sue

    I agree with Elaine about Liberty having a friend.

    However, I personally would love to see ALL private fireworks banned. There’s always a high fire danger; we see a couple of people hurt every year because of them. There is no “need” for individuals to fire them off.

    Organized community fireworks are great celebrations.

    July 16, 2013
  • Jo-Claire Corcoran

    Horses, with and without companions are still frightened by fireworks, etc. Horses are raised to trust humans and when a human approaches a horse, it is in that horses nature to trust said human. When that human then acts in an abusive manner it is doubly scary for a horse. The horse being afraid of the humans who have been terrorizing him would be a natural reaction, no matter if there were one horse or ten horses.

    A real horse person would understand that.

    July 16, 2013
  • BlessUsAll

    Yes to a companion and no to fireworks and other abuse aren’t mutually exclusive. Both are do-able!

    Hope this doesn’t sound like a spoilsport, but when there are several sets of community fireworks going off at various times of the July 4th night, and one of those community events is at a country club within a quarter-mile of one’s house, the shivering doggies don’t necessarily think that even community fireworks are such wonderful “shebangs”!

    And, ladies and gents, what about all the frightened wild creatures? Must they be forced to bolt and hide in terror year after year after year? Why do we pay so little heed to the feelings (the joys and the fears) of the species who don’t share our homes or who aren’t visible to us?

    July 16, 2013
  • Cocky Girl

    Elaine(and those who agreed with you): You obviously do not have any horses or dogs or you would not have made such a ridiculous comment. When animals are subjected to startling or terrifying noises they panic and sometimes the more animals there are, the worse their reaction and greater the chance of injury. Horses in particular can injure each other when trying to escape what they fear…fireworks in this case.

    Not everything can be learned from a book…you have to actually experience life too.

    July 16, 2013
  • BlessUsAll

    I don’t know why I’m defending Elaine when she’s capable of defending herself — but I really think her comments were not at all about fireworks and were ONLY about a single horse’s need for companionship. Period. What she said is, I believe, being taken out of context simply because the story is about fireworks (and she perhaps went on a bit of a tangent). If I’m wrong about what you meant, Elaine, I apologize. 🙂

    P.S. I’m the one who mentioned dogs and wildlife being scared by fireworks — and I didn’t make it clear that I was including horses in my comment. Whether one or a whole herd of ’em!

    July 16, 2013
      • Nancy B

        I second that!

        I always stay right here at home with the horses every July 4th and New Years.

        July 16, 2013
      • sherriey

        yes it does….for your average horse. but…it can be helped by desensitizing them to the ‘terror’. please read my stories above. these are true…. and its worked on all ages of horses….mature to foals.
        and let me say this…the noise from that gun club can be so loud at times that my husband and i cannot hear each other speak 5 feet away from each other…in our own back yard which is farther then the pastures. thats how loud the gunfire is.

        July 16, 2013
  • Nancy B

    I read the article and watched the video and signed the petition.

    I agree that Liberty would benefit greatly having a companion. Another horse won’t necessarily make her any safer or keep her from fearing the rotten kids who have tormented her or the fireworks, but there are a whole lot of other reasons to have a companion! Mutual grooming, swatting each others flies, taking turns napping without worry. But ya know, looking at the video and situation it occured to me maybe they don’t want another horse. There is only one horse, Liberty, who is 30. Maybe their “down to” just the one horse. As a lot of us know, being responsible horse people, having a horse can mean a commitment for years and years. Maybe they are unable or willing to take that on. So, I wrote an email to Mr. Enloe to respectfully encourage he and his Mom to consider adopting or fostering another older horse from a reputable horse rescue (which will take the horse back if/when they are unable to keep him/her any longer). I truly hope they consider that option for their lovely, obviously well cared for, Liberty.

    July 16, 2013
      • BlessUsAll

        I was just going to say the same thing, Jerry, then saw your comment. It’s a GREAAAAATTTTT suggestion! Thank you, Nancy B. I hope he takes you up on it. 🙂

        July 16, 2013