Tattoo shop raises money for burned horse

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A tattoo parlor in North Bakersfield is donating to a horse badly burned in a fire.

Last October, a stable fire ripped through South Bakersfield, burning 200 acres and killing 32 animals. Only four horses made it out–including Boss, a six-year-old stallion.

Boss suffered third-degree burns across 80 percent of his body, which vets believed to be fatal at the time. But, he soldiered on.

Nine months later, Boss is shyer than he used to be–but parts of his personality still shine through. Most of his hair has grown back, and he no longer needs most medications or painkillers.

“It was tedious in the beginning. He was around the clock, needed constant care,” said Lori Henderson, who’s been taking care of Boss since the fire. “Now he’s at the point where he can be monitored, but he’s not an every-hour, on-the-hour project.”

Henderson says recovery could take another year. While he’s able to eat and drink without issue, he requires much-needed lip surgery.

“He can’t use (his lips) to grip. It’s locked in that position so he can’t maneuver it like a normal horse would take a treat. So he’s capable of biting you,” Henderson explained.

His lip issues are problematic because he’s training to become a rehabilitation horse for child and adult burn survivors.

That’s why 7th tradition tattoo has stepped in.

“He has a fight in him. They didn’t expect him to make it, and he fought,” said Patricia Quinlan, a tattoo artist at 7th Tradition. “As long as we get everything together with his training, he’s going to be perfect to be able to help all burn victims in rehab to give them hope.”

All day, they’ve been collecting donations and raffling off tattoos, with all proceeds going to lip surgery and therapy. They hope to raise 2,000 dollars to help this former stallion live up to his name like a boss.

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