Tips To Safely Re-Home Your Horse

Finding the right new home takes time, but is well worth the effort and keeps your horse safe from potential harm.

Finding a Forever Home For Your Horse

The person ultimately responsible for a horse’s well-being is you, the owner. A critical part of the horse industry is to promote responsible horse ownership. The job of horse rescues and sanctuaries should be to help abused and neglected horses. While some owner surrender cases are rescue situations, other owners need information on how to safely re-home a horse.

The reasons for giving up a horse might include job loss, moving, divorce, family tragedy, loss of interest, injury (to horse or human), illness, or wanting a horse that possesses different abilities. During times of economic recession, horses suffer when owners face financial difficulties. When this occurs, there are practical solutions to helping owners keep their horses such as short-term assistance with hay/feed and veterinary care needs.

One of the most important things to consider when re-homing a horse is to allow enough time to advertise for a new home in order to locate a safe, qualified placement. Never send your horse to a livestock auction attended by horse dealers and kill buyers (those who purchase horses for slaughter purposes). Especially in tough economic times, your horse will more than likely end up sold for slaughter. It is far kinder to humanely euthanize a horse than to have it endure the brutality involved in the slaughter industry – from dangerous transport to inhumane killing. It is also important to put a fair market value on your horse; never advertise it for free.

The following are some options to consider when you can no longer afford or properly care for your horse:

If you bought your horse from a private owner or breeder, contact them to see about taking the horse back. They might also be a source for recommending other contacts if unable to take the horse themselves.

If your horse is in good health and can be ridden, consider the option of offering a half-lease or a full-lease option. This way you retain ownership of your horse but have some financial assistance with the expenses.

Spread the word! Let your equine veterinarian, farrier and other horse professionals (such as trainers) know that your horse needs to find a safe, new home.

Advertise in local horse magazines or on reputable internet sites. Be prepared to carefully screen any responses to your ads.

With any form of advertising, describe your horse and its abilities honestly. If he/she has not been ridden for some time, inform potential new owners the horse will need to be reconditioned for work. If the horse has special dietary or medical needs, say so. Many people lie or provide deceptive information about horses which hurts the horse even further.

Contact therapeutic riding or equine-assisted therapy programs in your area. While they do have specific requirements for the type of horses they can use, it might be worth a try if your horse has a quiet temperament, good ground manners and can do some riding. But be sure to check out these facilities and get references if someone might take your horse in.

Advertise at local feed and tack shops, boarding barns and even places like Petco or PetSmart if they accept advertising for horses needing homes.

Contact a local 4-H club, pony club or similar associations if your horse might work in these types of programs. There may be a family or two looking for a horse.

Horse rescues and sanctuaries generally operate at full capacity, but you can check with them regarding openings and if they do take in owner surrender horses. Occasionally they might be able to refer you to someone looking to give a horse a home.

A final word is to also consider the quality of your horse’s life. Is it time to consider humane euthanasia as an option for a horse with a chronic medical condition, in decline from former use or injury or has other illness?

As a horse owner, you are responsible for your horse’s safety and well-being. Only a few emergency situations require a horse to be re-homed immediately. Making the time to safely locate a qualified home for your horse is the right decision.

 

Adoption Alumni Update – Anna

Keeping up with Anna

In June 2012, we saved several horses from a low-end auction in Colorado. One of those horses was a little paint filly we named Anna.

An initial veterinary exam showed that Anna was about 18 months old. She had thickening near her knees which was diagnosed as epiphysitis. A second vet confirmed this diagnosis as the swelling was confined to the end of the radius while the knee bones themselves appeared to be normal. Anna also had a good range of motion.

With some dietary restrictions and making sure she didn’t do any “hard” work (or play), we let Anna continue to grow up and receive appropriate dental and farrier care as needed. By July 2013, a follow-up exam showed that Anna’s legs were normal and she would be able to go into light training.

In 2014, Anna was adopted to a wonderful home who has kept us updated on their progress together. Here is a recent update for 2018:

Anna has been doing cattle work this past summer and she really seems to enjoy the boxing classes at the cutting shows. We finished year end in the top 10 in Open Boxing with the Southern Colorado Cutting Horse Association and 5th place year-end with the Colorado Obstacle Challenge Series group. Also took her to a Buck Brannaman clinic. I felt so small next to him, but what an awesome experience!

Our thanks go to Barbara for giving this once cast-off little filly a loving, permanent home and to Sandy at Victory Hill Training Center for pairing the two of them up!

Adopting a Wild Mustang – What You Need to Know

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Mustangs display a range of personalities, from docile to dominant, just like any other domestic horse.

Wild horses deserve forever homes, but those homes require certain qualifications.

This article from The Horse does a great job of explaining some things to consider before owning a wild mustang.

“Since becoming available for adoption or purchase, Mustangs have earned high-profile status as adaptable partners for riders engaged in a variety of disciplines, ranging from trail riding and eventing to dressage and reining.”

Read the Article Here. 

Sorrow, Remembrance & Hope

Horses have played important roles in human history.

Where human footprints are found, so too are hoof prints.

Equines were our primary mode of transportation helping to settle ancient lands as well as sending Americans westward.

We salute the brave men and women of our military this Memorial Day weekend.
We salute the brave men and women of our military this Memorial Day weekend.

The Pony Express delivered the mail as other horses and mules worked on ranches and farm lands. Paddy wagons and fire trucks were pulled by horses. Thousands of horses were injured or died as they carried brave soldiers into battle.

From the right, from the left, and from the front, shot and shell poured in upon us. Many a brave man went down, many a horse fell, flinging his rider to the earth; many a horse without a rider ran wildly out of the ranks: then terrified of being alone with no hand to guide him, came pressing in amongst his old companions, to gallop with them to the charge. Fearful as it was, no one stopped, no one turned back.
-‘Captain, An Old War Horse’ from Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Today, horses are used for pleasure, sport/competition, ranching, and as companion animals. Their therapeutic benefits have aided countless special needs children and adults including great advances with autistic youth. Programs using horses with wounded warriors are producing extremely positive results.

We honor those who serve our country.

My father, a retired Army captain, used to drive past the stables at Fort Myer in Virginia so his horse crazy daughter (me) might catch a glimpse of the horses kept there. It was a bittersweet day decades later as we walked behind the horse drawn caisson to bury my dad at Arlington National Cemetery.

In Loving Memory

Front Range Equine Rescue’s work is both heart-warming and heart breaking. We want to thank all of our loyal donors for allowing us to save the lives of horses in need, particularly those in danger of slaughter both domestic and wild.

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To the “forgotten ones” where the suffering and abuse have gone on too long or to an extreme where humane euthanasia is the only option…

Tony_McCoy_fall

To the track horses who are over-drugged, raced too young, breakdown, die or end up at slaughter…

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To stopping the war on America’s mustangs with cruel roundups taking away their freedom and destroying family bands forever…

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To those rescued, rehabilitated and with a happy ending…

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And we honor our brave horses whose lives we seek to change for the better. We salute the brave men and women of our military this Memorial Day weekend.

Tilly, Melody and Whiskey Need Your Help

Rescue horses Tilly, Melody and Whiskey have all hit a ‘bump in the road’ during their rehabilitation phases and need some special veterinary diagnostic services.

Tilly joined us early this year with Mowgli. Both had horribly overgrown hooves and we’ve worked diligently to help them recover normal hoof shape and function. Tilly is a very sweet, well-mannered mini mare around 20 years old. We strongly believe she has Cushings disease and we need bloodwork to give a diagnosis. If positive, Tilly will also require a prescription drug, Pergolide, for the rest of her life. Symptoms of Cushings can include trouble with maintaining proper weight and a long, often wavy, hair coat that doesn’t shed properly. Tilly has both of those symptoms.

Can you help us pay for Tilly’s blood work and medication if the diagnosis is Cushings?

We need to raise $250 to cover the blood work and cost of initial medication supply.

Donate to help Tilly here.

Tilly before hoof trims
Tilly before hoof trims
Tilly after a mud roll!
Tilly after a mud roll!

Just two months ago Melody seemed perfectly normal at 6 months old.
Just two months ago Melody seemed perfectly normal at 6 months old.

Melody

Melody (aka Zara) was saved from a kill auction at 2 months of age with her mother, Harmony. Melody appeared perfectly normal until a few weeks ago. Both hind legs at the lower joints have begun to buckle and now she is losing weight with no apparent cause. We’ve started various supportive treatments but must find a cause.

The vet has informed us it’s highly likely Melody’s leg issues are genetic. Apparently, the type of overo pattern she and her mom are often carries a lot of “junk genes” from bad breeding practices.

Can you help us pay for additional diagnostic tests to help Melody?

We need to raise $400 to help with her current treatment and additional testing.

Donate to help Melody here.


Whiskey

Kind-hearted Whiskey
Kind-hearted Whiskey

Whiskey is a sweet gelding saved from a kill buyer. We’ve spent many months helping him heal from recurring hoof abscesses and malnutrition. In spite of Colorado’s continuing snow storms and up/down temperatures, other horses have shed their winter coats. We believe Whiskey, like Tilly, may have Cushings disease and need bloodwork done to help us progress with his final rehabilitation needs.

Can you help us pay for Whiskey’s bloodwork and, if needed, initial medication for Cushings?

We need to raise $250 to cover these expenses for a kind horse who should never have been in the hands of a kill buyer.

Donate to help Whiskey here.


duke.chiro_.neck_P.S. – I thought you’d like to know that Duke and Cricket are doing very well. We greatly appreciate everyone who helped fund their ongoing recovery needs.
Pictured Left: Duke with equine chiropractor