Return to Glory: The Lily Pond Welcomes Off-The-Track Thoroughbred Permanent Wave!

It was a lucky day indeed when former racehorse Permanent Wave arrived at the sanctuary on St. Patrick’s Day. Waverly, as we affectionately call her, is a 10-year old Thoroughbred mare who won over $39,000 during her career. She raced the Northeast tracks from 2011-2012 with nine starts, placing first at Aqueduct in February 2012.

Born in Kentucky to a New York breeder, Permanent Wave is Thoroughbred royalty. Her sire is Awesome Again and her dam is India Halo from Argentina. She’s even a descendant of the famous champion British race horse Nasrullah via her paternal line!

We first heard about Permanent Wave when we received a call from Susan Kayne, founder of Unbridled Thoroughbred Foundation. Susan was working with the

Columbia-Greene SPCA and local sheriffs to re-home 15 Thoroughbreds who found themselves living in horrible conditions of neglect at a local farm that had 25 horses but only enough food for ten. After Permanent Wave was retired from racing, she was used as a broodmare, producing five foals in five years before landing at this farm that was not prepared to provide adequate food or care for the horses. We agreed to accept Permanent Wave and arrangements were made for Susan Kayne to transport her to The Lily Pond.

St. Patrick’s Day arrived with snow showers in the morning, but that didn’t stop a determined group of volunteers and supporters of both The Lily Pond Sanctuary and Unbridled Thoroughbred Foundation from coming together to welcome Permanent Wave to her new home. The trailer pulled in and we all gathered excitedly to catch a glimpse of this beautiful horse. She walked off the trailer looking thin and shaggy, filled with parasites and covered in mud and rain rot. Despite this, her quiet dignity and regal presence were visibly apparent.

Permanent Wave headed straight through the crowd to sanctuary founder Susan Bandy and made direct eye contact. Susan reached out and put a hand under Permanent Wave’s chin and the two spent several moments in silent acknowledgement and connection. There was no doubt in anyone’s mind, including Permanent Wave’s, that she was finally home. A joyful new beginning for Permanent Wave and for us!

We nicknamed her Waverly set about introducing her to residents April and Sammir, who greeted her through the window of her stall. Sammir was immediately besotted with this paradigm of equine perfection. April was furious. Sammir and April have been a bonded pair for many years, and April was not about to put up with competition for the attentions of her beloved friend. It didn’t help one bit that Waverly arrived in heat, so Sammir never really had a chance. Resistance was futile and the flirtation began in earnest. April gnashed her teeth, pinned her ears and shouted “Stay away from my man, you hasty-hooved hoyden! Your fast ways may have worked on the track, but not in my house!” April kicked the stall for good measure but Waverly hardly noticed, as she was too busy batting her eyelashes at the doomed Sammir.

Our first priority was to clean her up, get her weight up, and treat the rain rot all over her back. Waverly received a visit from the farrier and the vet to be vaccinated and have her teeth floated. We’re happy to report that time has brought the three together as a herd. They share the same paddocks and Waverly gets very nervous if her two friends aren’t within her sight. She is blossoming in so many ways here at her new home — safe and loved!

Waverly would love to have a sponsor to support her rehabilitation and transformation to the superstar she knows herself to be!

Could you be her partner in success? Please consider befriending this lovely mare with a monthly sponsorship.

Sponsors can visit the sanctuary on Sponsor Sundays to spend time in beautiful surroundings with their four-legged friends. Your support is greatly appreciated!