WHAT WOULD A HORSE TELL YOU IF YOU LISTENED?: THE NURSE MARE'S TALE AND AWARD-WINNING DINKY: THE NURSE MARE'S FOAL - BY MARTA MORAN BISHOP - NOW AVAILABLE IN PAPERBACK, AUDIO, AND KINDLE
Winnie Award Winner at the Equus Film Festival. Dinky: The Nurse Mare’s Foal is the story of one little foals fight for survival after being taken from his mother within hours of his birth. Dinky, takes us on a poignant trip through the heart and mind of an animal, who was born for the sole purpose of producing milk in the mare. In the elite world of horses, Dinky was considered a by-product, a ‘junk foal.’ Dinky’s story will resonate with animal lovers, as well as anyone who has adopted. Although a horse, his story has been called an adoption story. The reader can follow him through the heartbreak, cruelty, loneliness, and finally to happiness in his forever home. His story is based on true events. Each event from the moment the author met Dinky actually happened, though it is the author’s interpretation of what he might have been thinking and feeling during the occasions described in his story. His early life which is unknown has been fictionalized by the author and constructed through research and imagination. There are many wonderful animal rescue leagues, many are very empathic to these young animals, though some are not. Since Ms. Bishop has no knowledge of Dinky’s early days she used the latter to enhance the strength of his story. It will break your heart, open your eyes, lift you up, and teach you much about horses. It is suitable for all ages.
5.0 out of 5 stars A Touching, Informative Story Inspiring Change
Reviewed in the United States on November 18, 2019
The Nurse Mare's Tale is told from the perspective of a horse named Sadie, who is placed in servitude to feed other mare's horses with her milk. Like many of Marta Moran Bishop's stories, this book takes an unflinching look at the problematic things we sometimes do in society in pursuit of profits. In this case, it's the equine industry and the practice of using nurse mares.
Nurse mares are bred for the sole purpose of providing milk to more "desirable" foals, such as racehorse foals. Their own foals are often treated as throwaways in the industry. The industry maintains that the practice is necessary, while equine rights activists condemn the practice. Throwaway foals are sometimes slaughtered, and the mares themselves are often repeatedly re-bred with little opportunity to properly heal. There is a huge profit incentive for thoroughbred farmers to use nurse mares in raising their foals.
Before reading The Nurse Mare's Tale, I knew a little about the industry and the lengths it goes to in order to maximize profitability, pushing the boundaries of humane animal treatment. Mares are sometimes kept under artificial light 24/7 early in the spring to influence their reproductive cycle, for example. Bishop's book raised my awareness of issues to a new level, and at times, it was difficult to continue reading for that reason. Horses are sentient beings and treating them as if they aren't is disturbing.
It's important reading, however, because it raises awareness of the treatment of these beautiful creatures on whose backs fortunes are made. Awareness of the issues is the first step in cultivating positive change.
Bishop's book is beautifully written, and she weaves in factual information in such a way that it comes across as a natural narrative. The lessons she presents are artfully delivered through Sadie's eyes.
Readers who are sensitive to the plight of animals or who want to know more about the horse industry will find this book deeply moving. At times, it is touching, and at other times, it's sad. Regardless, its message is an important one.
TOP 500 REVIEWER
5.0 out of 5 stars Marta Moran Bishop's DINKY shows the reader that all life is valuable
Reviewed in the United States on December 25, 2019
If you have had the pleasure to spend any time with Marta Moran Bishop you know that she is a lover of life. That is true in the way she treats humans as well as animals. The story of Dinky is one that should give all of us pause, and since Marta allows us to see the world through Dinky's eyes we are able to realize just how important all life is.
To know that some consider life easily expendable once it has served its purpose is difficult enough, but imagine being the one looked at as being worthless and less than. How would you feel knowing that to some what you have to offer is more valuable than your life. Through Dinky the Nurse Mare's Foal we see Dinky handle life in a new environment and how some saw him worth saving and wanted to help him survive and thrive.
The book is entertaining but it's hard to read it and not think what if Dinky was a human being. How would you feel in that situation? Would you give up or do all you could to live a healthy happy life.
Showing the flaws of the world that we live in while also reminding us of our opportunity to showcase our humanity this book reminds the reader that all life is valuable---it's just up to us to see it.
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