One-horse town: Arlington woman gets to keep therapy horse - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

One-horse town: Arlington woman gets to keep therapy horse

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Poco the horse is staying in Arlington. 

Poco is a therapy horse who lives with Kimerly Bright in Arlington. In November, the Arlington City Council said because Bright lives within city limits, she couldn't keep the horse. Bright was worried that Poco would be taken away, but the court decided she could keep him. 

All Bright had to do was admit the horse got loose three different times before she built a fence. She now has to pay over $200 in court costs, but she says it's worth it. 


Original Story 

Arlington is peaceful.

It's quiet.

You could say it's "un poco" or "a little" taste of Iowa.

Poco is also the name of a horse in town.

He lives in Kimberly Bright's backyard.

"He had half an ear and I thought, 'Oh, he's not whole either. Together, we're whole,'" said Bright.

For Bright, Poco's not only a pet. He's her therapy horse helping her cope with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

"I was abused as a kid. I don't have suicidal thoughts anymore because I think, 'Who's going to take care of Poco,'" said Bright.

She has a doctor's note from Regional Family Health which says, "Ms. Bright has significant mental health problems for which animal therapy has been beneficial. Having her horse to tend to on her property is part of her therapeutic regimen."

Bright and Poco live on Liberty Street. The Arlington City Council says because it's within city limits, it's not the place to keep a horse.

The city did not want to comment on camera, but KWWL has copies of multiple warning letters from the city saying other families and a daycare with young children outside are nearby.

The warning letters also say neighbors filed complaints about Poco getting loose several times last spring and about the smell of manure coming from Bright's yard.

One man told KWWL, "I kind of feel for the horse in a little corner lot like that. He's on bare dirt. It's not the place for him."

Other neighbors tell KWWL it doesn't bother them. "I think it's fun to have the horse across the street," they said.

Bright built a fence to keep Poco from getting loose again.

She also says she lives near the edge of town.

"If I lived in the middle of town, I never would've bought a horse," said Bright, who continued, "I haven't fought for anything in a long time, but then he came along and gave me a voice."

Now, it's up to the court to decide if Poco should go.

"I don't know what's going to happen," said Bright.

The court could fine Bright for having the horse within city limits, take the animal away or do nothing at all.

A hearing scheduled for today was pushed back until December 27th.

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