A Boy and His Horse: The Large Animal Hospital helps restore a special bond
Posted February 19, 2015
often said that dogs are man’s best friends, but sometimes a horse
can be a boy’s best friend. Throughout history, humans and their
horses have shared a unique bond. Drawn to their overwhelming power
and mystique, they continue to be an integral part of our lives.
Ten-year-old Kaden Ramirez and his horse, George, share a bond that
is deeper than most.
Growing up immersed in the rodeo culture, Kaden’s love for
horses was almost predestined. However, it wasn’t until he was
diagnosed with autism at the age of six that rodeoing became more
than a hobby; it became his therapy.
“It took almost two years for George to fully learn Kaden, which
is a feat considering that the process of buying and training a
horse for him is very intensive,” said Kimberly Ramirez, Kaden’s
mother. “People would stop me and say, ‘Wow, it looks like Kaden
finally learned that horse,’ and I would say, ‘No, George finally
The dynamic duo has been rodeoing together for a little over two
years now and began excelling in barrel racing all over the region
this past year, recently claiming the all-around title in La
Grange. Not only has rodeoing with George brought Kaden
extraordinary pleasure, doctors have confirmed that participation
in rodeos has helped his symptoms.
On the night of September 20, 2014, George had an accident and
poked his eye with an unknown item in the pasture, resulting in an
emergency trip to the veterinarian. After being treated by their
referring veterinarian, the eye was not progressing as they had
hoped, so George was sent to Dr. Leslie Easterwood at the Texas
A&M Large Animal Hospital.
“George came to the Large Animal Hospital with a five day
history of a puncture to the left eye after showing little
progression. Dr. Sam Williams, a Texas A&M graduate who had
been treating George in Victoria, Texas, sent him for an injection
into his eye that is not commonly done out in private practice,”
said Easterwood. “He had some fibrin (inflammatory material) inside
the anterior chamber of the eye that was preventing his pupil from
opening. If the fibrin remained in the eye, the pupil would remain
closed, and he would not be able to see once the puncture was
Although a horse can typically function and perform various
activities with the loss of sight in one eye, it would be dangerous
for the duo to continue barrel racing unless George regained enough
sight in the eye. The extensive veterinary procedures have led to
costly medical bills. Easterwood and her team decided, however,
that they would do all in their power to keep this duo
“After hearing the story about the bond between George and
Kaden, we were moved, and agreed to keep George in the hospital to
help provide him with the best chance at sight. George would be a
very good teaching case and could offer our students the
opportunity to follow the case the whole way through and see the
effects of our treatments,” Easterwood said. “Although the Ramirez
family had not asked for any help, we were more than happy to
provide it. The family’s friends also started a GoFundMe account to
help with expenses from both our hospital and the charges from Dr.
Easterwood and her team kept George over the weekend, performing
ultrasounds on the eye to monitor progress with the fibrin, and
over time, the pupil opened and George became responsive to light.
“These are both good signs that we will hopefully have a sighted
eye once the corneal healing is over,” said Easterwood.
An entire community waits anxiously for an update on George’s
condition, but none more so than 10-year-old Kaden. Regardless of
the outcome, this dynamic duo will stay strong.
“The Texas A&M Large Animal Hospital is a wonderful and
caring place,” said Ramirez. “Dr. Easterwood, her team of students,
and all of the staff were very dedicated to not only George and
Kaden but also us as a family. I feel they all went above and
beyond the call of duty, and we will always have a special place in
our hearts for this animal clinic. They have made Kaden a big Texas
A&M fan, and he now keeps up with all of the football games and
wants to get everything in maroon; A&M has made a friend for
Contact Information: Megan Palsa, firstname.lastname@example.org, Office:
979-862-421, Cell: 979-421-3121
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