Sam Stathis fighting to save horses from barn fire
03:28 AM 25 Mar 2016 NZDT
Lake Worth, FL - Sam Stathis, owner of the South Florida Trotting Center where a disastrous barn fire claimed the lives of 12 horses last week, including one of his own, is fighting another battle these days, and it is against the veterinarians at the equine hospital where seven of the rescued horses are.
"I want to treat and take care of these injured horses as if they were my own children,"Stathis said. "Just like a human I want to explore every possible means of treating the 11 horses and giving them a chance. God took 12 horses in the fire but allowed 11 to be rescued for a reason."
Five of the eleven horses are in critical condition at Reid & Associates Equine Hospital in Loxahatchee and Stathisis pulling all punches to get them the best care possible.
"The horsemen and women at the farm were heroes in saving the eleven horses." Stathis said. "And the vets on the scene and at the hospital worked 24/7 and they all did such a phenomenal job during a major traumatic event. But now we have new crossroads to travel.
"Who would not get a second or third opinion from leading doctors before pulling the plug on a loved one?" Stathis explained. "I have gone public that I am paying every bill for these 11 horses, even though only four are mine. Some of the owners have given me permission to oversee their medical needs but the hospital is refusing on minor technical terms.
"If these veterinarians at Reid & Associates would just allow some specialists to come in and give a neutral second opinion, I would abide by it." Stathis said. "And if they all say that one of the horses will not make it and is suffering, then I will not stand in their way if they need to euthanize any of the horses."
Stathis has been trying to get renowned equine internists, cold laser therapy specialists, dialysis experts and has reached out to human burn center doctors across the country to help with their knowledge and practices to help the rescued horses to survive.
"After seeing the horses yesterday," Stathis said. "I disagreed with the head vet at Reid as he was going to euthanized one of the horses and they had me removed from the property by police escort. I am not trying to play God, I just want to exhaust every avenue we can to save these horses at any cost."
"I wrote this prayer last night for the horses." Stathis said.
"God you know I love you and I love these horses and my community, the very vets I am challenging and their entire team have done an amazing job (well almost all) through the first emergency phases and at the moment have kept the 11 you entrusted with me alive until now.
NOT all voluntarily from day one they couldn't wait to stick the needle in one's neck and Macy's Big Boy is now doing better as I knew he would be.
God, the strongest prayer here, please take all the horses you want to be in your stable with our other twelve, including my 2016 Hambletonian horse, Celebrity Pilatus.
You are a merciful God and will NOT let any of your creatures suffer more than they can handle.
Please take them before I have to see them again and I will not shed one tear if that is your will.
If it is your will they survive and NOT die in the hands of a vet with a lethal injection, please give me one more miracle and let the outside experts agree to keep them alive at any cost.
I know you are busy helping millions of people around the world and I am sorry to keep bothering you, but I guess that's why you keep sending me Angels. Please send me one with a strong legal degree."