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In August 2014, 38 abandoned mares and two foals in Bourbon County, Kentucky were rescued from terrible conditions. One of the horses rescued, Jo Jo’s Gypsy, was so emaciated that she was practically a walking skeleton.
Weighing only 758 pounds, veterinarians did not expect Jo Jo to survive. After being rescued, the Thoroughbred mare was given to Our Mims Retirement Haven in Paris, Kentucky.
It was here that Jo Jo got a new chance of life and met a little girl that would change her forever.
Out of all the horses Jeanne Mirabito, owner of Our Mims Retirement Haven, has seen, Jo Jo was in the worst condition of them all. Mirabito’s granddaughter, Kaylee, was quickly drawn to the bay mare.
Kaylee helps at the barn nearly everyday. She quickly bonded to Jo Jo and gave the mare all the more reason to keep on fighting for her life.
Their relationship quickly blossomed and Kaylee came as important to Jo Jo’s will to live as food and water.
Fortunately, a group called One Horse at a Time came foward to help pay for Jo Jo’s care and medical bills. They paid for almost all her bills until she was back to health. In addition, they generously made a donation of 40 bags of horse feed.
Kaylee immediately dedicated herself to caring for Jo Jo on a daily basis.
Not only does Kaylee take care of Jo Jo’s basic needs, she provides her with unconditional love. She gave the mare a fighting chance she needed to survive.
In just a year and a half after her rescue, Jo Jo’s weight rose to a healthy 1,200 pounds and she was even cleared for light riding.
Her transformation is truly incredible and a big part of it is due to Kaylee’s love and dedication. Kaylee spent countless hours helping Jo Jo make an awe-inspiring recovery.
In less than two years after her incredible rescue, Jo Jo and Kaylee competed at the Thoroughbred Horse Show Association Show at the Kentucky Horse Park.
The adorable duo took second place in their show ring debut together, which is truly an amazing feat. Congrats Jo Jo and Kaylee!
From being on the brink of starvation and barely being able to walk, Jo Jo’s transformation is astonishing. The bay mare is now thriving thanks to the love and care Kaylee gives her.
Their incredible friendship is heartwarming and inspiring.
Just look at the transformation Jo Jo underwent in this inspiring video below!
Be sure to follow Our Mims Retirement Haven on Facebook for updates on Jo Jo and all their other horses!