ARGYLE (CBSDFW.COM) – A miniature horse is helping young children cope with some very challenging disabilities. Midnite is missing the lower half of his left hind leg. But a prosthetic leg has helped him to surpass his owner’s greatest expectations. The three-legged horse is now inspiring some kids who share his unique handicap.

Emmy Raney has a special bond with the horse named Midnite. “I just came out here and started petting him a lot,” the little girl said. “We just became friends.” Last April, Raney’s family elected to have her left leg amputated due to complications from spina bifida. That decision was difficult, until the family met Midnite.

The small horse, who lives at Ranch Hand Rescue in Argyle, is also missing a leg, and has a prosthesis that was made just for him. “She saw how Midnite just ran around and acted like all the other little horses,” said Donna Raney about her daughter. “She just thought, ‘If Midnite can do it, I can do it too.’”

“Midnite can do mostly anything, like me,” 10-year-old Emmy Raney said. “We both have it on our left leg, and so it’s kind of like we’re twins.”

The horse has been an inspiration to Emmy’s friend, too. Abby Gieseke was born without her left hand. “Anything he can do, I can do,” the girl said.

Midnite encourages children who share his hardship. It was an unexpected, but beautiful bonus to his touching story. When Midnite was first fitted for a prosthesis, staff members at Ranch Hand Rescue and the owner of ProsthetiCare – who made Midnite’s leg – were just trying to save the small horse from being put down. “We get to save animals and help people,” said Bob Williams with Ranch Hand Rescue. “It’s a great place to be.”

Just last week, Ranch Hand Rescue was able to fit a full-sized horse named Phoenix with a prosthesis. He is still recovering, but already walking on the new prosthetic leg. “Seeing these guys – the little ones – and how they bond with these animals,” said Tim Goldberg of ProsthetiCare, “that’s really touching.”

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