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Project - ‘Healing Gili Ponies’


Why Gili Ponies?

There are “millions upon millions” of animals living in non-ideal, neglectful or abusive conditions today.

During a visit to the Gili Islands 3 years ago, we connected with an amazing group of people /partners  who share our dream of 'Healing Gili Ponies' 

'Healing Gili Ponies' is LoveHealAnimals first project!

We are committed to raise the funds needed to build a 'Gili Ponies Sanctuary’ and we are making good progress with this ambitious goal.

All funds raised will go towards securing suitable land on Gili Trawangan, building stables, day yards with shelters, and a sheltered area where the ponies can be provided with veterinary attention. 

This sanctuary will become the 'Healing Sanctuary for the Gili Islands' Working Ponies'. 

By creating and collaborating in close partnerships, our dream has now turned into a real goal - to build a beautiful ‘Gili Ponies Sanctuary’ for the hardworking 'Gili Island Ponies',  and to provide full time veterinary & farrier care for these animals.


The location

The Gili Islands are a group of 3 tiny islands – Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno and Gili Air in Indonesia, arcing away from the northwest corner of Lombok Island off the coast of Bali, Indonesia.Motorised transport is not permitted on these islands so all transport on the Gili Islands is done by foot, bicycle or horse and cart, (locally known as ‘Cidomos’) - 'The Gili Ponies'.


The Crisis

There are over 400 working horses and ponies on the Gili Islands. These ‘Carriage Ponies’ (locally known as ‘Cidomos’) are used to cart everything that comes on and off the islands and across a broad range of business sectors including tourism, construction, rubbish removal, transportation and household errands. These animals are worked to support peoples’ livelihoods within the local community on the Islands.

Unfortunately, these working horses are subjected to widespread and severe welfare problems and suffering; and are in urgent need of physical and emotional healing and help. 

The horses and ponies are emaciated, many of them are diseased or injured and are in need of veterinary attention. There are no Veterinarians living on the islands. In addition, their hooves and feet are in poor condition and are not cared for as there are no trained farriers on the islands.

The ponies have inadequate or no shelter, their stables are dirty with little or no bedding and many of the ponies can’t even lie down as they are tied up with short ropes. Many of the horses are simply tied to trees or poles as a result of a lack of stabling available. As a result, they are tired from not having the appropriate rest that they so desperately need.

The ponies are working long shifts around the clock in stifling and humid heat carting tourists, luggage, rubbish and construction materials all over the islands. Unfortunately for these poor animals, their carriages are massively overloaded, they wear ill-fitting harnesses and bits and are often beaten with whips to keep them moving. 

The horses that carry construction materials and rubbish are in even worse condition. These ponies that cart the rubbish around the island  are some of the hardest working ponies on the islands. During peak tourist season they cart around 20 tonnes of rubbish between 10-12 ponies. It is a sad fact that the owners and drivers ensure tourists mainly see the healthier animals. The ponies working on the islands live on average for only a few years as compared to the usual twenty five years for a healthy horse or pony. 

Due to a lack of education, the horses’ owners and drivers do not know how to look after them and don't care or understand about these ponies’ well-being.  They use them to earn as much money as possible while they are able. It is cheaper for them to let the ponies slowly die of dehydration, exhaustion and disease, or sell them for horse meat! - and then buy new animals to replace them than it is to care for the existing ponies.

Unfortunately, the tourists that visit the islands are supporting this cruelty, even unintentionally.

Our on-hand experience shows these horses and ponies are in critical need of basic sanitation and shelter facilities, access to fresh clean water, access to adequate and nutritious food.

We are working hard to achieve our goal to open the ‘Gili Ponies Sanctuary’ with the intention of working towards a better life for all these ponies - with both short and long term goals. ‘Healing Gili Ponies’

Our Partners

We are so fortunate to have partners who are business owners, entrepreneurs, freethinkers, movers and shakers – people and organizations who believe there is always a better way, and a way to get things done.

We are committed to collaborating and working with ‘grass roots’ organisations and people, powerful ‘influencers’ and our mission for empowering non-profit, and to ensure effective action is carried out in response to the need of improving both short and long term welfare for the Gili Ponies.