Mini-horse causing major controversy in Hernando

5:59 PM, Jun 17, 2013   |    comments
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Spring Hill, Florida -- Daisy and Elijah both love carrots, but perhaps more than carrots, the horse and boy love each other. 

"Good girl, good girl," Elijah says quietly while feeding Daisy carrots from his hand. "When I go outside, I say 'Good morning Daisy. I love you.'"

But this mini-horse, not much bigger than a Great Dane, is now the center of a major controversy. Hernando County has sent the Samaroo family warning letters because their neighborhood is not zoned for agriculture and keeping a horse is against the rules.

PHOTOS: Boy's mini-horse causes neighborhood controversy

However, Kelly Samaroo is fighting to keep Daisy for her son's sake. Elijah has a genetic disorder that has caused developmental delays and mom says Daisy is a wonderful therapist. Riding helps Elijah with his balance and then there's just the furry friendship part. 

"It helps him," Kelly says, standing by the small backyard corral. "All I can do is pray; I'm a mom on a mission to give my son the best in life."

And people living closest to the Samaroos don't object to the horse. In fact, before this Daisy dilemma hoofed it into the news, some didn't even know about their little "neigh-bor".

"I think if it's doing some good for Elijah, then okay," said Doris Bergman who lives right next door. "I didn't know it was even there."

"You go around to all the people in the neighborhood; I bet 90% would say, 'I didn't know it was there'. So no--we don't have a problem with it," said Susan McCabe who lives right across the street.

The Samaroos have also provided the county with a doctor's letter stating that the horse therapy could possibly benefit Elijah.

Hernando County's legal department is now reviewing the Samaroo's situation and how the Americans with Disabilities Act could play into it. A ruling could come within two weeks.

Elijah doesn't understand everything, but he knows one thing for sure -- if Daisy has to live somewhere else, "We'll be sad and we'll be crying; we'll miss her."

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