It's been a tough start to life for one Cork foal, but thanks to his resilient spirit and an abundance of TLC from his owners, things are looking up for three-week-old Paddy.
The skewbald foal, born in the Tierney family’s Ardkilly Stables just outside Kinsale, is owned by Áine Tierney and her partner, jockey Jordan Canavan.
Paddy is the offspring of a mare belonging to Ms Tierney and a stallion belonging to Mr Canavan.
Speaking to, Ms Tierney lauded her brave foal who has overcome tough odds.
“About a week after Paddy was born the mare’s milk dried up so we started bottle feeding Paddy from then on.
“With the foals for the first six months, they’re very fragile and they’d be quite weak.
“He caught pneumonia then after about a week or so.
“He was deteriorating throughout the day and then that night we decided to bring him into the house. Thankfully we did and he pulled through.
“He wasn’t even taking the bottle; we had to syringe little amounts of milk and his heart rate was half what it should be.
“He’s flying it now though – he’s really after turning a corner.”
That first night Paddy slept in a make-shift stables in the house fashioned with couches and some straw.
However, his indoor accommodation has now been upgraded to a swimming pool filled with straw – affectionately dubbed ‘The Paddy Pool’.
“He’s still in the house. He’s getting a bit boisterous now – he’s jumping out of his pool and going for little wanders around the house so maybe in a week or two he might be moved back out to the main yard again.
“We’ll put him out maybe for a few hours during the day in the stable but he won’t be left out overnight for quite a while.
“We got him two goats for company as well when he does go out full time – they’re called Wizz and Richard,” Ms Tierney laughed.
Ardkilly Stables have horses in training and also breed thoroughbreds and half-breds.
The latest addition to the stables, little Paddy, requires round-the-clock care and a real team effort.
“It’s basically every hour or two during the night.
“It’s tough going, we’re absolutely wrecked but he’s so worth it!”
Paddy is quickly becoming the talk of the town and even has his own Instagram page.
“I was inundated every day with texts and calls about Paddy so I just decided to set up the page about Paddy to keep everyone informed and up to date on his progress.”
Ms Tierney expressed her thanks to Glasslyn Vets who have treated Paddy.