A stallion that once freely roamed the Outer Banks is getting treatment after he showed signs of old age.
Since winter, Captain the wild horse had been thin, “which is not abnormal for an aging horse,” a North Carolina rescue group said on Thursday.
“We monitored him throughout the spring and summer and while he remained skinny he was alert, mobile, grazing, and behaving normally,” the Corolla Wild Horse Fund said in a Facebook post.
But the situation took a turn when the group thought Captain could have an infection, the post said.
That’s when the nonprofit says it brought the animal to its rescue farm.
There, a veterinarian took an X-ray revealing the horse’s “teeth are a mess” — again, not surprising due to the animal’s age, according to the Corolla group.
Those damaged teeth had also caused a sinus infection, and Captain is on medication and awaiting evaluation next week, the group says.
Corolla Wild Horse Fund works to protect a herd of mustangs thought to have descended from a group that arrived in the 1500s, according to its website. The animals are often spotted on beaches along the coast, photos show.
In his 20s, Captain is “very old for a wild horse,” the group’s Facebook post said.
“We made the decision to remove him and take him to the rescue farm where he could be treated and made more comfortable, or if necessary, humanely euthanized,” the post said.
Now adjusting to his new lifestyle, Captain has been “kind” and “level-headed,” the horse fund reports.