Rihannas story

ARCH were alerted to Rihannas plight by the owner of a small dog rescue centre in Granada province. Marisa told us of a bay mare who was in great pain from apparent laminitis and needed urgent help. Seprona were involved and the Agricultural Offices as her papers were not in order and it required much head scratching and intervention from our vet Rocio, who had accompanied us, to issue new travel documents to everybody’s satisfaction. With Seprona leading we drove up country to find the mare. She was in a sorry state. Emaciated and clearly in pain from her forelegs. Rocio administered pain relief to help her with the long journey back to ARCH.

Upon arrival it was clear that this beautiful big bay mare had bad infection in both hooves and was in urgent need of the farrier to cut her overgrown hooves back. Over the next few weeks we soaked her hooves in hot water and dressed them with antibiotics , put boots on her to alleviate the pain and had daily visits from the vets. On cleaning out her hooves it was discovered that she had a sharp flint stone growing into the bone of her leg, causing a massive infection.

We were not able to control her pain and requested a visit from Jose Mendez, the equine surgeon, with his portable Xray machine. The result was devastating. The infection was too serious to be treated and the best thing was to put Rihanna to sleep.

RIP Rihanna. She was only with us a short time but we all loved her for her gentleness and courage



  1. Natalie

    Such a beautiful horse.
    Her story is so sad, I have just been watching it on bargain-loving brits on channel 5 which made me want to look up horse charity’s is I absolutly adore them!
    As the programme has not finished yet I did not realise how bad her infection was until I visited your website and read her full story!
    What a tragic waste of such an amazing creature!
    How people can treat animals this was I will never know!
    Complete admiration for all who work at the charity and give their time to helping rescue these beauty’s.

  2. Lorna

    Have just seen Rihanna on tv. So sad she was beautiful!!
    Thankyou all on her behalf for saving her from more suffering.

  3. Becky Denton

    This was such a devastating story, what amazing work you all do, I’m sure many have sad endings like this. Those horses wouldn’t have a chance without you, it astonishes me that people can be so heartless and cruel.
    I would love to come out and volunteer one day, my dream once I retire and the children have grown up!

  4. Linda

    Just seen on the tv.
    As a horse owner horrified at what the poor mare suffered
    So glad she found love and care even if for such a short time,,,,,,,she was absolutely beautiful, x
    Your work is amazing ,,,,,thamkyou for your caring x

  5. Kate

    So, so sorry that Rhianna couldn’t be saved.
    Thank you for trying. It is heartbreaking when you become involved in helping abandoned and/or abused animals. Helping abused dogs here in France over the past ten years should perhaps have toughened me up to the sadness and disappointments you inevitably encounter but it hasn’t. Then you remember the success, happy stories, the ones who made it, recovered and found new happy homes. The forever, loving, caring and kind homes. Wishing you all the best for the future.

  6. Arch Team

    Natalie Thank you for your kind words, Please do follow us on Facebook, when you visit Spain do try to visit us and meet the team of volunteers that work so hard every day.

  7. Arch Team

    Hi Kate Thank you for caring, every day brings new challenges as you know so well yourself with the dogs abandoned and abused in France. Without the Team of volunteers here in Spain this would not be possible, as you mentioned you never toughen up to the sadness and disappointments. Horses/Ponies and Donkeys cannot speak out so we are they voice, and you are the dogs of Frances voice. Thank you Kate

  8. Arch Team

    Hi Linda thank you for messaging in regards to the Channel 5 program, Rhianna for the last few weeks of her life experienced so much love and care from the Arch Team and she will be in our hearts forever, The volunteers here at Arch work so hard. Please do follow us on Facebook. Regards The Arch Team.

  9. Arch Team

    Hi Becky thank you for your kind words, please do come and visit us anytime we would love to meet you and show you our Horses/Ponies and Donkeys. We will look forward to meeting you. Regards The Arch Team.

  10. Arch Team

    Hi Lorna thank you from the Arch Team. It is so sad as some we cannot save but many do have happy endings, the team of volunteers/vets and farriers work so hard and never give up. Hope you watch the next Channel 5 program and please follow us on Facebook. Regards Arch Team.

  11. Gina

    The world is full of contrasts. The cruelty and the kindless. Thank you for caring.

  12. Arch Team

    Hi Gina thank you. Regards Arch Team

  13. Hazel Wainwright

    Been watching BLB & was so moved by your work. Rhianna was so beautiful. I have 2 horses and a Shetland pony who I love but boy she really got to me…such a beautiful horse and still so loving given the abuse she has suffered. Keep up the good work, it must be very difficult working in those situations every day. xxx

  14. Arch Team

    Dear Hazel Thank you for contacting us, Rhianna was a really beautiful horse and in the short time she was with Arch she received so much love and care from the Arch team that are made up of volunteers that do work so hard every day. Regards Arch Team.

  15. Sheryl Warner

    Have just found your website after watching blb on thursday night,poor rhiannas story had me in tears.Was hoping she would pull through,it makes me cringe and i get angry how animals get poorly treated.I hope to visit c.d sol this year and maybe get to visit you,im one of those people who talk and feed all the stray animals whether large or small.Keep up the good work.

  16. Arch Team

    HI Sheryl thank you for watching the Channel 5 brits abroad. Please do come and visit Arch when you are over next time..


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