Oldest Stallion in Assateague's Maryland Herd Dies - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Oldest Stallion in Assateague's Maryland Herd Dies

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Sham in June of 2014 (Photo: Assateague Island Alliance) Sham in June of 2014 (Photo: Assateague Island Alliance)

BERLIN, Md.- Assateague Island National Seashore's Maryland herd lost its oldest stallion, Sham, this week, according to the Assateague Island Alliance.

The nonprofit group reported Thursday that Sham, who was almost 25-years-old, was humanely euthanized on Monday due to his declining health. The group wrote on its Facebook page Thursday that Sham's health began declining in September. 

The group said the park would not put a horse down just for being thin or injured, but in Sham's case, the combination of extreme old age, emaciated condition, and infection meant he was going to die soon, and there was no reason to leave him to die over days or weeks. The group also said it was believed that there was no way Sham would survive the winter and maybe not even make it through October.

"He was a little thin during the summer, which isn't a surprise considering his age, but still kept his mares from other stallions up until a few weeks ago," the group wrote on its Facebook page. "In the last month, he began to decline very noticeably, and in his weakened condition finally lost his mares to another stallion where he sustained injuries. Sham also had severe infections on both sides of his face."

Sham left behind two sons, Fonzi and Delegate's Pride, as well as two daughters: Bella-Boo and another unnamed bay mare. It is also believed Sham had two granddaughters, Johnny's Star, and Giggles.

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