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Laurel Park

Horses bred for greatness inspire new lives for offenders

SYKESVILLE - Nelly Madden spoke softly as he ran his hands over the glossy hide of retired thoroughbred Liang's Dancer Friday at Second Chances Farm in Sykesville. "Grooming isn't just to clean, but to check for injuries or new bites or scratches," said Madden as he picked and inspected each hoof. Madden went through a list of the care he provides to Dancer and the other horses at the farm. Seven days a week, he checks vitals and behavior for problems, cleans the stalls and grooms, feeds and provides basic first aid, stress relief and therapy for the racehorses. He demonstrated a massage technique, exerting firm but gentle pressure until Dancer signaled his relaxation....