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Horse Found Abused Again After Adoption

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A 7-year-old horse is back in a rescue program, healing once again from injuries at the hands of his former caretakers. A 7-year-old horse is back in a rescue program, healing once again from injuries at the hands of his former caretakers.
JONES, Oklahoma -

A 7-year-old horse is back in a rescue program, healing once again from injuries at the hands of his former caretakers.

His name is Clark Gable and he’s a black and white paint. He has a freeze brand showing his life was saved by the folks at Blaze’s Tribute Equine Rescue (BTER) in Jones. Now, he’s on his second round of recovery.

Originally, he was rescued by Oklahoma City Animal Welfare and brought to Natalee Cross at BTER with a broken leg and a hernia. The Cross' rehabilitated him and even found him a new home.

The adopter signed and swore they'd “spoil and love” Clark forever in December 2014.

But months later, people recognized the symbol that would save his life again.

“My phone just blew up. I was getting text messages and phone calls right and left of people saying one of your branded horses was just checked in at the sale,” Cross said. “I immediately jumped in my car and ran to the Jones Sale Barn to identify who the horse was. Immediately, I’m like, 'that’s Clark Gable.'”

Not only was Clark Gable at the livestock auction, Cross found him injured.

“He’s got puncture wounds on his side. He’s got quite a few gashes on his head. One of the gashes on his head led to an eye injury,” Cross said.

Come to find out, the adopters had sold Clark not even a month after signing those papers, without speaking with BTER.

Under the adoption contract the animal cannot be sold at an auction or even transferred to a new home unless it’s been approved by the rescuers at BTER.

The adopters weren't the ones who checked him in to be sold, so Cross had to stay and bid to get him back.

“He was not leaving that sale barn unless he was coming here because I would’ve paid whatever I had to,” she said.

BTER then spent more than $1,100 to care for Clark's new injuries.

“You just have to wonder what else happened to him during this time. When we got him back, he was not even remotely himself. He just stood in the back of the pasture. He didn’t even want to be with the other horses and that’s not him,” Cross said.

It took him a few weeks to remember he was back in a safe place. And after all he's been through, he's back to his normal behavior.

But it may take some time before Cross allows anyone to adopt him again.

“We’ve shed a lot of tears. You know, to me they are not just an animal. They’re not just livestock. They’re part of our family,” she said.

The adopters have been notified by the rescue's attorney to reimburse them for medical costs or they will file a lawsuit.

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