PINNACLE, N.C. -- High school students from West Stokes and East Surry, along with some friends, are giving around the clock care and hope to a horse discovered neglected and abused.
"We saw this poor guy lying in the trailer, just barely breathing," said Ana Kaplon who discovered the extremely emaciated horse in a cattle trailer at a Mount Airy auction last week being beaten by its owner. "The man was kicking him in the mouth and ribs trying to get him up. The horse was too weak to move, he couldn't move his head or nothing."
Kaplon says she got the owner to give her the horse and brought it to Pilot View Farms in Pinnacle where friends came to help and named the horse Spirit.
"In the beginning we didn't know what to do," said Brooke Dixon, one of more than a dozen friends who came to help.
In one week, thanks to veterinarian care, medicine, six liters of IV fluids, donated supplies and students keeping watch every hour of the day Spirit is making a comeback.
In the past week he's gained 35 pounds and though the scars of the nightmare he lived are still healing, the students say he is teaching them a lot about life and love.
"I feel like he is as much of a life saver to us as we are a life saver to him," said Dixon, whos family plans to adopt the horse.
Surry County Animal Control is investigating the case and asking for information from the public about Spirit's previous owner.
You can follow the students program on Facebook. Donations of supplies and funds are being accepted at any Wells Fargo Bank under "Chrome Spirit Benefit Donation Fund."