Empress Steele

And Then There Was One—Twice!

  • Breed – Gray Thoroughbred Mare
  • Born 6/26/02
  • Entry Date – 12/12/10
  • Type of rescue – Surrendered
  • Reason – Owner financially unable to care for his animals and surrendered them all
  • Special needs – None


For most of the horses at the Equamore Sanctuary, we know very little about their early lives other than the immediate past trauma that brought them to our barns. With Empress Steele, we know a great deal more. She is a registered Thoroughbred mare with an impressive family tree. Both her sire and her grandsire were successful race horses whose pedigrees go back to the blue grass of Kentucky. Unfortunately, we found her in the no-grass of Christmas Valley in December of 2010 where her owners had intended to breed the next generation of racers. Sadly, their financial plans failed and although Steele’s owners loved her and the rest of the animals on the remote property, they could not care for them with proper feed and hoof care. Three of the horses came to Equamore. Tess, an elderly mare, succumbed after a short stay. The stallion, Awesome, had terribly overgrown and deformed feet because of gross neglect. Hoof trimmers did everything they could to correct the damage, but it was too late and he was put to rest just a few short months after his arrival. But Empress Steele, a statuesque gray mare with a lovely face and passionate personality, has thrived.

For several years Steele lived in a wonderful foster home near our Sanctuary as a companion horse to an elderly gelding. When both the foster person and the gelding passed, Steele returned to us where she will remain. “Once an Equamore horse, always an Equamore horse!” She easily rejoined the back mare herd as if she had never left. Steele now flirts with the geldings on either side of her stall and delights us with her elegant grace as she gallops up the mare field with her friends.

Although she sports a racing tattoo on her upper lip, we do not know if Steele ever competed. Thoroughbred racing is a business that generates a new “crop” of foals every year and therefore a new trash heap of unsuccessful adult horses. Fortunately for Empress Steele, her future is secure with us and appropriately for royalty, she will live out her days with plenty of green grass, proper care, and the love of humans who cater to her every need.

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