Breed: American Quarter Horse
Approximate Date of Birth: 4/3/1997Sponsor: Needs a sponsor
Arrival Date: March 11, 2022
Farewell Date: December 23, 2023
Keno was retired from the U.S. Border Patrol in 2018. When he retired, he was adopted by an agent. Unfortunately, the agent subsequently wasn’t able to continue to care for him. In hopes that Keno could have a new career as a lesson horse, he was moved to a new ranch. Changes in 2022 to his farrier care were suspected of causing his feet to become very sore. His shoes had been removed before he was moved to the new ranch. However, even when his feet were re-shod, he remained sore. It was thought that this change had caused “road founder,” a type of laminitis that can be caused by trimming a horse’s feet too short. This diagnosis prevented him from becoming a lesson horse, so he came to us to enjoy full retirement on March 11, 2022.
While in our care, Keno surprised us all with a diagnosis of Cushing’s Disease. We had not suspected this given his body type and healthy coat. Fortunately, the diagnosis allowed us to start him on medication. This, combined with proper shoes and pads, have proven to provide Keno with the support he needs to be pain-free.
Horses that have served this nation through the U.S. Border Patrol hold a very special place in our hearts. We are so grateful to our vet Dr. Harlan and our farrier Ray for helping to provide Keno with the quality of life he so richly deserves.
Farewell Date: December 23, 2023
Overnight, between Friday and Saturday (Dec. 22 and 23, 2023) Keno passed away.
His passing was completely unexpected. He was perfectly fine on Friday, playing with his best buddy Phoenix and eating well. Dr. Harlan is as shocked as we are.
Since Keno arrived in March of 2022, shoes and pads had kept his feet comfortable and daily Prascend had managed his Cushing’s Disease. He had experienced a recurrent sinus infection that led to the extraction of several teeth and some extended rounds of antibiotics. His sinuses had been problem-free. “Not knowing” what happened adds a layer to our grief.
Keno was retired from the U.S. Border Patrol in 2018. When he retired, he was adopted by an agent. Unfortunately, the agent wasn’t able to continue to care for him. A diagnosis of laminitis brought him to us on March 11, 2022.
During his time with us, we found him to be the perfect gentleman, well-mannered for everyone. In December 2022, things changed dramatically. Phoenix arrived at the ranch. Given Phoenix’s behavioral issues it was an easy decision to put him next to Keno. We knew we could count on Keno to be calm and mature. What we did not anticipate was that Phoenix and Keno would become the very best of friends. They spent countless hour, day after day, playing and goofing around like colts. Keno’s friendship with Phoenix was transformative for them both. It showed us the goofy, silly side of Keno. It helped Phoenix learn to relax and enjoy life.
While our hearts are broken at Keno’s passing at only twenty-six years of age, Phoenix’s grief in unbearable. Phoenix stayed as close to Keno as he could after his passing and continued to hold vigil in the same spot long after Keno was gone. In fact, as Keno’s body was taken off the ranch, Phoenix called out. His cry was a single note. This a note picked up by other horses at the ranch, with each horse adding a single note sequentially. It isn’t a frantic call, it is a long, beautiful wail. It reminded us of “Taps,” a sound wrapped in both beauty and pain. It was the perfect sendoff to our Keno, U.S. Border Patrol, Retired.
Please hold Phoenix in your hearts. He is having such a difficult time dealing with Keno’s passing.