Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I worry about horses

I worry about the horses, not just the horses that come into us but horses in general. In a world where more and more people toss out their spouses , lovers, friends and even family for not "making them happy" in a world where people spends thousands and undergo extensive  painful treatments and plastic surgeries to appear perfect rather than work for it or accept aging as part of the natural process  , and where we can instantly get whatever we want with a click of a mouse or phone keypad  its a hard time to be an animal that is not only expensive but also not always ideal or instantly meets our expectations. We are a world of  people that impatiently tap our feet at the microwave , Horses take patience and work , they have bad days and good days and none are completely perfect everyday. How do  they fit in to such a demanding world ?
I worried about Allante , he is a beautiful horse, watching him trot and canter will stop you in your tracks and you cant help but imagine him running through a desert in some exotic land of his ancestors. He loves people and enjoys attention . But Allante was kept in a pen by himself for so many years that when one of the other horses were introduced to him he ran to the corner of the barn by the mirror and cowered next to his own reflection for comfort. He wouldnt go up to the other horse and nearly knocked people over trying to get away from any horses near him. At first I thought maybe they kept him alone because he was the bully but its very obvious he's been through something awful where another horse hurt him pretty bad. One of the greatest things about horses is watching them in a herd , seeing the buddies groom each other and the group stand head to swishing tail to keep the flies at bay and when group gets bucking and running its a sight nobody can watch without smiling and admiring  what has to be nature's proudest creation. To see that a horse that never got to enjoy being in a herd is heartbreaking. 

He is 21 years old and doesnt really know how to interact with another horse can we fix this or is he only going to be able to find a home with someone who has no other horses ? At his age most people already wrote him off as too old what are his odds if he has to be an only horse? Not great and it would be a sin to not let him get the redemption he deserves by having a person of his own to love after such a weird life. Al is just a great horse in so many ways someone would be missing out as well.

Today Al has blended in pretty well with the herd and has particularly started hanging out with the ol coots Sassy, Absolute and Resolute. It may seem incredibly pedestrian to a lot of people but seeing him munching away next to the girls made my eyes leak a bit  There is hope he can be part of a herd but is there hope he will ever find a way to be part of a family? Will he ever get his own person who will groom him and take him for rides and bring him treats just because he's a cutie? Will they do right by him when he does finally slow down ( judging by how he moves that wont be for a quite a while) and be by his side when he takes his last breath or will they ship him off to a stranger and get something newer and faster, will they stick him in a trailer of strange horses where he cant hide in the corner? Hes so sensitive and sweet he needs someone to protect him from that .  I worry about horses.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Who won the rescue war??

"Who won the rescue war?" That's what my daughter asked while we were driving to school the other day . The night before she was reading over my shoulder about yet another rescue dispute made public . Without even really thinking I responded " no horses that's for sure. " I thought about her question over and over on the drive to work. While disputes are bound to happen between any business it sure seems like a lot of these disputes break out between animal rescues and in particular horse rescues or between their supporters. People from both sides spend hours even days and weeks trying to beat the other down or talk their side up. All the time and energy spent makes no sense to most sideline observers when they see two or more groups on the same side with the same goals embattled in an online war. Why is so much time and energy wasted on these arguments ? I think it has to do with competition for donors to support a particular group , as they are businesses , naturally there will always be a bit of competition. I hope most of it has to do with passion as well. Passion to help animals is a great quality but what you do with that passion is the tricky bit. You can stay up late fighting online , let your chores go while you make your point to the other rescue's side, or you could harness that passion and do something positive that actually helps horses. The horses would greatly appreciate the last option. A non-profit organization is not owned by anyone. There is no owner who can do whatever they want , it is not a private business The very reason chairties are exempt from tax is because they are doing a public service. That is not to say a non-profit cannot make a profit. They can . They have to in order to keep going unless the founders and board members cover it themselves they rely on donations. There is no federal funding or goverment money pouring in as some people think . You as a donor are in charge Nobody not even the founder has a guaranteed position with a charity. If you feel a rescue or any charity for that matter is not living up to their mission statement , acting as for profit business instead of a public service not removing bad board members or misappropriating donations you should express those concerns to the Board of Directors. In order to keep you, the donor or adopter happy the Board of Directors would be wise to listen to your complaints. They are your employees in a sense. If they don't want to change or remove Board members that are causing problems , don't allow the public to have any say on policies than they aren't really a public service and its time to move on. Find a group that listens or is more aligned with your goals or heres another option..... If you still have all that passion , time and energy and want a place to harnass it and do something good with it. Hey, give us a call. We welcome passionate horse lovers. We want you on our steering committee , on our projects committees and on our Board of Directors.We want to hear your ideas for programs and ways to help Love to help horses but can't stand something we do? Tell us about it or better yet change it with us. Don't just offer advice like ;you should do more gelding clinics. Get out there and talk to your vet about it and help us get one in your area help us find facilities. Want to start a youth group for horses and kids? Us too, but we need people to help. Want to start your own rescue, cool It's highly suggested you have experience before jumping into any business What better way to learn the ropes than to be on a committe or board member of a rescue first? Not in the area? There are horses everywhere that need a foster home and tons of opportunities to help online. We know a lot of people have time to go online we've seen the various discussions about rescue, slaughter, wild horses, etc that go on for months and do not help a single horse. There is plenty of room for anyone on our team , no matter if you have never owned a horse or have 50 . We don't care if you ride English or Western or only like horses as lawn art as long as you like helping animals you're welcome. There are so many ways to help horses that don't involve direct rescue and rehome, although we welcome people that want to help with that aspect as well. There are thousands of horses in need and they need thousands of passionate people to help. We need you , they need you. It takes a tiny bit of your time, probably less than you spend a week reading Facebook and certainly more rewarding for you and the animals. :) Email and join the BITS team let's help the horses the right way instead of talking about it !

Friday, February 8, 2013

Neglected Orland Herd

If you have been following us on facebook you are well aware of the situation in Orland involving 80 horses . The horses are being removed from the property as quickly as possible and need homes asap so more horses can be saved.
Please join us on facebook for the latest information and photos of the horses. We are accepting donations for feed vet and farrier care for these horses.
If you can help email us at  donate through to the same email address or call 530 513 7348
We love how the horse community is helping this herd and we need more to join the effort.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Pro vs Anti Slaughter is that all horse people can talk about?

Its been a long time since we posted on the blog. Busy busy busy

Pro slaughter vs Anti slaughter . These discussions always end in the same name calling, statistics quoted but no real solution . There are still horses going to slaughter 130,000 from the US in 2011 up from the year before. No matter how you feel about it its a business and it is based on supply and demand. Even with that high of a number being slaughter there are over 200,000 horses that are in
 rescues that are not being absorbed into the population as the animals welfare/rights groups promised. If you save a horse from slaughter it does make a difference to you and that horse but another horse or horses went in its place , the number would depend on how much money went to the kill buyer Supply and demand. There has always been neglect and even if slaughter came back there are still people who will not sell or send their horse to slaughter , some would let them starve first and will never enter the slaughter pipeline .The things most of us agree on are that there are too many horses circling the drain . There are too many horses that do not meet the criteria people are looking for and too many horses for homes. We know where babies come from . The time, energy and money spent on killbuyers, lobbyists, posters , rescues or directly to the head organizations of whichever side you support could have gone to a DVM to geld , a trainer to give them skills to make them valuable or to a horse owner that just needed a couple of bales to keep the horse they wanted. Being proactive to help horses from circling the drain would have prevented a lot of the problems we see now. Can we put aside our political differences and help the horses or is it just a lost cause ?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Did you ever meet someone and wish you hadn't?

That's how I feel about the guy who was going to shoot this horse.  When the owner emailed me that if she didn't move her horse by Monday he would be shot by the property owner I thought it must be an empty threat. When she gave me the address I felt absolutely sick to my stomach.
I used to board right next door and the trails were fantastic but in order to get to the trail you had to ride past this one house. The path was not on his property but it didn't stop him from putting up wire lines right at rider height to try to keep people from riding by or maybe to purposely hurt people .  Clotheslining someone is not legal by the way and it's down right nasty and dangerous. The first time I saw the line I had just rounded a corner on a young colt at a canter . It was dusk and I barely saw it in time. Literally I stopped inches from it. I came straight back and took a bolt cutter to it and let's just say " he and I met". It went back up, I cut it down . Again, this was not on his property it's about 20 ft before his property line in an area where people have been riding for years and he built his house there recently.  I called the police , who I believe had it removed again. It kept on like this for months I moved so I don't know if it continued after I left but I do know a girl who got knocked off her pony from it. Luckily she was not seriously hurt or worse.
He now boards horses at his house ?? Bizarre world.
We planned on Monday afternoon because we wanted to make sure it was at least 90 degrees so I could really enjoy the long drive with no air conditioner.  UGH, why do they work fine when you don't really need them?
I pulled up and saw the man outside. I was really prepared for another round of words with him but he just went inside. Whew, very glad of that because my tolerance for jerks is directly impacted by the temperature . The owner went to go get the horse and when she brought him out of his pen she said" last two times it took 6 people 7 hours to load him"
Oh great! I saw she was having trouble with the odd contraption of a gate and offered to hold the horse. He was a little wound up but not too bad we walked over to the trailer . He did not load right up unfortunatly and did not care if there was hay , carrots or nice treats in the trailer. Happily it didnt take 6 people7 hours but about ten minutes just the two of us , one long line and a little tapping on the butt.
So he is Eddie a 6 year old Andulusian  that was broke and then turned out for two years. The new owner of 2 months has been lounging him but has not tried to ride him.
So that's how he got here, why I think he really would have been shot and who he is.