Dread Head Cowboy’s horse ‘has drastically improved,’ now on private farm after expressway ride, Ald. Lopez says

SNEED EXCLUSIVE: The horse, which stopped traffic on the Dan Ryan on Monday, should not be ridden ever again, the South Side alderman says.

SHARE Dread Head Cowboy’s horse ‘has drastically improved,’ now on private farm after expressway ride, Ald. Lopez says

NuNu, the horse ridden by Adam Hollingsworth, otherwise known as “The Dread Head Cowboy,” rests at Forest View Farms in Tinley Park. Hollingsworth has been charged with a a felony count of aggravated animal cruelty for riding NuNu on the Dan Ryan Expressway during Monday’s evening rush as a form of protest against kids getting shot in Chicago.


The horse patrol . . .

No No, NuNu ...

Where is NuNu?

Sneed has learned the injured horse nearly ridden to death by the “Dread Head Cowboy” in an anti-violence protest on the Dan Ryan Expressway, is safely on the mend and on her way to recovery since being moved to a horse farm in the south suburbs.

“She’s rallied,” said Ald. Ray Lopez (15th), a strong advocate of humane animal care who works closely with the city’s Animal Care and Control Department.

“But I’m told it should never be ridden again,” he said.

Although initially listed in critical condition and facing euthanasia following the 8-mile, shoeless ride that snarled traffic Monday, the injured horse is expected to be able to walk again in a quiet, stable environment, added Lopez.

Severely dehydrated and twice collapsing after it got to Chicago Animal Care and Control, “the horse was transferred to the Tinley Park Farm to be cared for immediately by a vet specializing in equine care,” he said.

“It’s now responding to IV fluids, and its condition has drastically improved since being transferred to the farm,” Lopez said.

Adam Hollingsworth, the now notorious expressway rider of the injured horse, is not only charged with a felony count of aggravated animal cruelty but is now getting death threats for his treatment of the American Paint horse.

On Thursday, a teary-eyed Hollingsworth said he didn’t know where his horse was and he asked for it back. He said he loves horses and would never intentionally hurt one, but was calling attention to all the kids shot in Chicago this summer.

But Sneed also hears Hollingsworth — who has been seen at protests riding horses around the city this summer — was “already on the city’s Animal Care radar months ago for riding a horse near the expressway,” Lopez said.

“This is not the first time,” Lopez said, even before Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s office tapped the cowboy to do outreach for the U.S. Census. “We had videos and pictures of him multiple times before the mayor hired him to be her census outreach person/cowboy.

“We were trying to find out where he lived before the mayor hired him,” said Lopez, who has frequently sparred with Lightfoot during her administration. “We were actually on the hunt for him due to concern about how his horse was being kept.”

The city might send an invoice for the cost of NuNu’s care to Hollingsworth. A GoFundMe Hollingsworth launched earlier this year — with the goal of opening a horse barn in the city — has raised more than $88,000 as of Friday, with many donations pouring in since his highway ride.

Lopez, who has six dogs (four rescue) with his husband, Hugo, said, “We’ve been seeing a rise of farm animals in the city” even though “the only legitimate horse license is a horse carriage license. There is no city license to have a horse pet!”

Lopez is told Hollingsworth keeps his four other horses at a farm in Dyer, Indiana.

A woman who answered the phone Friday at Forest View Farms in Tinley Park did not comment to Sneed on whether NuNu was there, but Lopez is happy she’s doing better.

“I’m told NuNu is now eating and has had healthy bowel movements and her saddle sores are being addressed,” Lopez said. “The horse’s teeth and hooves were in bad condition; the horse was fitted for horse shoes Friday for added support. It had none during its deadly concrete ride. And, of course, she will get her teeth cleaned.”

Lopez believes “how we treat animals is a reflection of how we treat other people.”

“Dealing with animals in a kind and compassionate way creates empathy for another sentient being — and if you have empathy that carries over how you act with people, your neighborhood and your community.”


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