HE’S been through one heck of a life.
Big George the pure-white shire horse, who worked at the Samuel Smith Brewery in Tadcaster, was rescued by the Albert Horse Sanctuary after a canker in his foot meant he could not do his tough job any longer.
He was saved from a grisly fate and has lived happily alongside friends, thanks to a lot of tender loving care, at the sanctuary ever since.
But now the ‘gentle giant’ has been diagnosed with arthritis in his twilight years - which means he needs a lot of extra attention and help to keep going.
The sanctuary is hoping to build a new stable for George, who is aged around 14, and is appealing for readers’ help to meet his needs.
Mary Hepworth, who runs the sanctuary in Cawthorne, Barnsley, with her family, said: “Everybody just falls in love with George, he is a big softie.
“We do need some help because, apart from anything else, George eats a heck of a lot. He is a very expensive horse to look after.
“We pay around £40 for a bale of hay and in the summer George eats eight of those a week.
“His joints are very stiff and he needs work on his feet, so we’d like to get him a new stable as well.”
George is something of a equine celebrity - having featured in The Star several times before.
And he touched the hearts of readers so much that some people still help out the sanctuary now.
Mary added: “After the last time we put an appeal out people came here just to see him. I’ve got one lady who still buys him carrots now!
“I think shire horses are popular because they go back to traditional times of working animals.”
n To donate or offer help visit http://albertshorsesanctuary.org.uk/ or call Mary on 07721327879.