Often referred to as "Endo the Blind", he underwent surgery a few years ago due to an eye disease, resulting in the removal of both his eyes. Despite his blindness, he thrives remarkably well, almost unbelievably so, as a horse without sight. This is attributed to three main factors: Endo's immense willpower, his incredibly patient owner, and his miniature companion that acts as a "guide horse".
Endo's story is one of resilience, of a horse fighting to regain his zest for life, and of an owner who goes to great lengths to give her horse a second chance. Endo's journey teaches us that a dark fate doesn't necessarily equate to a grim one.
The story begins with the moment Morgan and Endo found each other. Since she was just 13, Morgan has known Endo, who was then only a few months old. She received him as a gift from her grandmother, who allowed her to choose a horse from her herd. Ever since, the two have shared countless experiences and have always been inseparable. However, when Endo turned 8, an event occurred that changed everything for them, but it only strengthened their bond.
One day, Morgan noticed something unusual about Endo's eyes. She was certain that they were causing him pain, as they were watery, and he kept squinting them. The veterinarian was quickly called, and it was determined that Endo had contracted the disease Equine Recurrent Uveitis (also known as "moon blindness"), which is the most common cause of blindness in horses. In addition, he also had glaucoma and cataracts.
Initially, Morgan tried to alleviate Endo's pain by eliminating all dust and allergens that could irritate his eyes. He was given medication, his eyes were smeared with ointment, he was only let out in the evening and night to avoid sunlight, and the veterinarian visited several times to administer stronger medication. But nothing helped. His eyes just hurt more and more. Eventually, his right eye almost burst, and he wouldn't eat because of the pain. The eye couldn't be saved. To relieve him of the pain, it either had to be surgically removed, or he had to be euthanized. Morgan, of course, decided that Endo should have a chance, so the eye was removed. In the picture, you can see what Endo looked like after the surgery.
Unfortunately, Endo didn't enjoy his new life as a half-blind horse. He was scared and trembled when he was alone. Only when Morgan was there did he seem calm. Amidst all this, the right eye continued to deteriorate, and Morgan had to make the decision that it too had to be removed. Therefore, Morgan began to acclimate him to life as a completely blind horse. For short periods, she covered his eyes and practiced commands with him. Although he was initially scared, he learned to trust Morgan and follow her instructions.
Endo's right eye was removed about six months after the first one. This time, he recovered much faster and displayed a completely different confidence. Morgan herself is certain that the many hours she spent acclimating Endo to life as a blind horse made the difference. At the same time, Endo was now free from pain, which gave him a renewed joy in life.
When the decision about Endo's literally dark fate was made, Morgan immediately began searching for a companion for him. It was very important to her that he didn't feel alone in the darkness. Fortunately, she found the little miniature mare, Cinnamon, who was in desperate need of a new home. She was in very poor condition when Morgan took her in, but today she is doing well.
Cinnamon lives with Endo, both in the stall and in the pasture. She keeps him company and guides him, as Endo can always smell and hear where she is. The only time they are not together is when Morgan is training with Endo, as she then takes on the leading role herself. Moreover, Cinnamon definitely doesn't like being away from her herd, so she's perfectly fine staying at home. Endo can certainly be away from her, but he's always happy to find out that she's there again when he returns. Just look at how lovely the two of them are together.
Even though Endo is a blind horse, he has an amazing life. He can do almost everything that a sighted horse can do. He can be ridden, jump, navigate obstacle courses, travel in trailers, and often accompanies Morgan to competitions and demonstrations. He has truly shown that he is a fighter and that he wants to live despite the darkness. This is undoubtedly also thanks to Morgan's patience and the company of little Cinnamon. Without the two of them, he couldn't do all the things that make up a true horse's life.
Endo is a wonderful example that blindness should not be interpreted as a death sentence for a horse. He has proven that a future doesn't need to be bright to be good. For Endo's life is both dark and good – in fact, it's quite amazing. He always has his ears forward, and he plays just as much in the pasture as all the other horses. What more could one wish for? There's no doubt that it was the right decision for Endo to have his eyes removed so he could have a life without pain.
Endo has gained popularity both online and in real life. Not just because of his unique condition, but also due to his capabilities despite his lack of sight. You can follow Endo and Morgan on their Instagram, @endotheblind.morgan, or their Facebook @endotheblind.