Posted by Rachel
on Jun 15, 2013 in Just Because
| 0 comments
We’ve got the land. We’ve got the knowledge. We’ve got the money (not enough. never enough – just to be clear). It is time for the Taylor family to get a horse.
Our 4H group took a tour of a local horse rescue. I’m a sucker for rescues as my last horse Flirtation Walk came from one 15ish years ago. No, it’s actually more than just her. I love a good underdog and rescues take in the horses that no one else wants, the horses whose only other option is the long trip to a meat factory in Mexico or Canada. And the truly sad thing is that for a good percentage of the rescue horses, the only difference between them and a horse someone will pay good money for is time and effort (ours, not theirs).
That could have happened to Ruthie.
I’d had several horse friends tell me about the rescue we went to tour. It was almost an eerie coincidence as it all happened so fast. I had two rescue horses on my radar as possibilities, but when we got out there neither one of them felt right (hard to explain that feeling, but when something is going to be mine, I just know it. Insta-love). But there was this little Morgan mare that a volunteer was hand-walking… I hadn’t considered her before because all her pictures had her riding western, and we were looking for a kids’ English /Hunter Hack type pony, but my heart went pit-a-pat-pat.
She and her mother had been dumped last fall on the side of the freeway. Ruthie had never had human handling. She didn’t like being touched let alone haltered. She was seriously underweight and terrified. The Humane Society collected her and the rescue took her from there. She turned out to be such a delight that it took little work to get her used to being groomed, round-penned, and ridden. And who was riding her? A 13 year old girl.
Ruthie was clearly perfect for our family.
We went through the adoption process and brought her home to live with our goats. She is super green (Whoa? What’s whoa?), but also super willing to learn and forward (forward meaning she’d rather be moving forward than standing still). We adore her.
And since she was a tad lonely and we haven’t found the next member of the family yet (working on that…), we fostered another horse that had also been dumped and then saved by the rescue. His name is Beau (the kidlets call him Grandfather), and he’s a 30ish Standardbred. Ruthie acts like she hates him, but she’s happy he’s come to stay (until he finds his own forever home).
For those interested in horse rescues, here are a few I follow…
Perfect Fit Equine Rescue (Morgan Hill, CA)
Pregnant Mare Rescue (Watsonville, CA)
Starlight Sanctuary (Fallon, NV – They pull horses right out of the kill buyer’s lot just days before they are shipped to slaughter – amazing group of people. Really stressful to watch them scramble to find homes for all the horses week after week after week though.)
Last Chance Corral (Athens, OH – They save foals orphaned when their lactating mothers are sent off to feed more valuable racehorse foals in Kentucky. If not rescued, the foals are sent to slaughter. I really, really, really want one of their foals and there are a bunch being shipped my direction. Fingers crossed my fickle heart agrees (and we can get the timing right as a 6 week old horse is not something that can be left at home when we go on our summer vacation)!)