Ellie Mae & Trudie Lou

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Ark Watch logo 2022


    Name: Ellie Mae

    Type: Draft Mule

    Color: Sorrel

    Markings: Blaze

    Sex: Mare

    Birthday: 11/27/1993



    Name: Trudie Lou

    Type: Draft Mule

    Color: Grey

    Markings: None

    Sex: Mare

    Birthday: 11/27/1998


In January 2019, a group of eight draft horses ended up in the Bowie, TX kill pen. They were being discarded by their owner who no longer wanted them. As those of us in the equine rescue world so often see, after a lifetime of service to their humans, these sweet old souls were being dumped for a few bucks. Most of the drafts in the group were in poor condition. Celine Myers of the Ark Watch Foundation decided to rescue at least two of this pitiful group and determined that a very large grey draft molly mule and a slightly smaller sorrel draft molly mule had been used as a carriage driving team. Celine, with a very heavy heart knowing that she could not save them all, pulled the driving pair of mollies.

She named the grey mare “Trudie Lou” and the sorrel mare “Ellie Mae”. The girls were transported to Reata Equine Hospital in TX to be examined and treated for possible respiratory illness. The two mollies arrived very hungry – a good sign that they felt well enough to eat. They were older then their kill pen listed ages. The vet aged Trudie Lou to be 21 years and Ellie Mae to be 24 years old. Bloodwork indicated both girls were dehydrated and an ultrasound of their lungs showed that both were suffering from pneumonia. Both girls were treated for several weeks and the pneumonia resolved. About two months into their stay at the Texas vet clinic, Trudie Lou began having some problems with her front hooves. What was initially thought to be thrush, a biopsy would confirm to be canker which is a horrible cancer-like disease that affects drafts. It took several months of intensive treatment for Trudie Lou’s canker to resolve. Although Ellie Mae didn’t develop canker, for weeks her feet were treated for thrush as a precautionary measure.

Celine, meanwhile, was trying to secure sanctuary for the girls at the Black Beauty Ranch in Texas, but this wasn’t possible. When Red Bell Run was approached, we agreed to take these two gentle giants and give them the care and retirement they deserved. Thanksgiving week of 2019, eleven months after being rescued, Trudie Lou and Ellie Mae arrived at Red Bell Run.

Unfortunately, Trudie Lou’s canker would return. However, our vet was able to place her in a trial for a medication that eventually resolved the canker. It was an arduous four months of treatment, bandaging and intensive care, but today Trudie Lou is canker-free and has been for several years. Dear Ellie Mae suffers from several allergies and requires constant monitoring and treatment for her skin, especially in the spring and summer months. Through it all Trudie Lou and Ellie Mae have remained the sweet, gentle-natured molly mules that so typifies these wonderful equines.

Today, Trudie Lou is 24 years old and Ellie Mae is approaching 30. Both have some age-related issues now including Cushings and arthritis, but are doing well. They happily live at our Mountain View barn, spending their time enjoying each other’s company, grazing and lazing their days away being doted on by our staff and volunteers. 


Elle Mae Daniel M AWF
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Trudie Raven


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