Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sunday January 31st, 2010

Okay, we can't believe it has been 3 weeks since we sat down to write and update everyone on the progress with BITS! Things have been moving along nicely and we are very excited for what we have been able to accomplish so far. Jumping into the non-profit sector and starting a horse rescue is something that we both, just not something we planned on doing. We have already had our list of set backs the first and most consistent is the liability issue. Everywhere we turn, we are faced with the issue of protecting ourselves from lawsuits. If you follow us on Facebook you will already know that the cost for our insurance is $700 for the year. Neither Deb and I have the money at the moment as all of the horse care is still being privately funded by ourselves. Hopefully once our 501C3 status is completed we will be able to apply for grants to help with the cost of rehabilitating and helping horses.
The hardest thing is knowing what we could accomplish for the horses and owners in need with the $700 (Geld 14 horses, pay for 20 trimmings, purchase 7 tons of hay or 70 bags of Elk Grove Stable Mix for the hay bank, 3 months of professional training for one of the rescued horses, an opening to care for a rescued horse, etc. etc..)We even tried to rent out a few facilities for the gelding clinic and each one turned us down for fear of liability issues. It does become slightly disheartening that in order to do any good you must first protect yourself..

Our January 12th Euthanasia Clinic was a success. We were able to help 3 horses who's owners could not afford the cost to euthanize and render their elderly and injured horses. Unfortunately, the cost of rendering is increasingly expensive due to the rise in its demand. Many years ago, you could still bury horses on private property, but with the expansion of housing and water contamination issues, this practice is not so frequently used. So good old supply & demand has made it even more costly to render along with the rise in gas, liability and workers compensation costs. Our clinic used several resources to be able to offer the service for $100 a horse. For every 2 paying horses we were able to offer a slot for free, without having to ask others to pay for the cost. Much can be done with Jamie’s office work of placing calls and calling on those who are willing to give their time, as we all know money is tight these days, but we can still accomplish much with the donation of time and product.
A special thanks goes out our vet Bear River Mobile Veternarian Service, Dr. Jennifer Dewey who donated her day and gas to come down here and perform the euthanasia. Without compassionate veterinarians like herself, this clinic would never have been possible.
And to North State Rendering Co, who like Sacramento Rendering Co gave us an excellent discount on the removal and disposal of the euthanized horses.

On a brighter note, Jamie is off to Auburn on Tuesday to do a walk-thur on a facility that is willing to partner with us in the gelding clinic. It is such a blessing to have a fellow horse rescue step up and offer their 20 stall barn, since we ran into lack of venue issue. Together we can accomplish much more and help those who are the heart of our operations- THE HORSES! We will officially open up the 5 available slots for the clinic once the time table and volunteer schedules have been completed. We still have a goal to geld 100 horses this year, so lets all pray that this event goes well enough that it will occur on a monthly basis.

Since is it is a lovely day, Jamie is off to take Bob out for yet another lesson on confidence and  Deb is already hot on the trails with Repo who's eye is completely healed with no sign of his melting ulcer.  See you all soon!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Week of January 2nd

January 2nd & 3rd

Deb was sick so I spent most of the weekend cleaning stalls and feeding our 3 rescue horses, waiting for the call that she was still alive. If you had the flu that has been going around- you understand my concern.

Finally, on Sunday Deb started to feel better and took the long drive from our Magalia facility down to the Loma Rica headquarters with one of her personal rescue horses, Richie. Richie was listed on Craigslist for $250 and needed a home ASAP or else... Deb took action and posted her plea to get Richie on the Alex Brown Racing forum and was able to raise the money to purchase Richie and pay for a little of his rehab. With a bad shoulder, paper thin soles, navicular and a sad look on his face Richie was a 9 year old Double Dollar QH on his way to a better future. Deb's rehab of Richie took over a year and today he is a happy, healthy and gorgeous horse. He is such a gentleman and I am so happy to have him in Loma Rica for a few days.

Monday January 4th
Today I spent some time laying out the new fencing. What a job!! Words can not describe how excited Deb and I are. Up until now, we have been paying for all of our horse rescue related expenses out of pocket and to get a couple hundred dollars of free fencing material was the break we needed. So, with a can of construction spray paint and 16ft tape measure, I took to the pastures to create 3 areas for our horses in addition to the 6 stall QT area. We cannot wait to post pictures!
Tuesday January 5th
Today was bittersweet. Today Richie went to his new home. After a year of TLC and lots of care Deb was able to let Richie go. We were very particular about who adopted this horse. One, he is a perfect gentleman! Two, he is ranch ready, can do trails like a pro and can haul the kids around without any problems. Due to his navicular, we really wanted to find him a home where he would be able to roam in a large area and be used lightly. Thank god for good friends, we found it. I drove up with Richie this morning to his new home on 25 acres where his family of 7 will ride occasionally, but love him daily.

His new mom, Joe and a few of the four legged residences accompanied Richie down the drive to his new pasture. All 15 acres of it! After being turned out he set his head down and started in on the great feed the pasture has to offer. With one last look and a " see ya gal" to me, he was a home. I could not wait to give Deb and call and let her know that this was the match made in heaven we had been praying for.

After all the adoption paperwork was completed me and my rig were off to the next stop. I got a picture of Richie at the time he picked up his head and realized that this playground was his very own.

Happy trails Richie, you deserve this!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Week of December 28th

Monday December 28th
Not a whole lot to report mostly office work, stall cleaning and feeding of horses. I am trying to rearrange our website to make it more user friendly and easier on the eye- wish me luck!

A few calls were made and the euthanasia and rendering of Cash was scheduled for the owners. Apparently the lady who owns Cash has no knowledge of the three horses she owns, all where her husbands who just suffered a massive stroke. I will be at her place Tuesday morning to meet the vet and assist him with the proceedure.

Deb has been busy filtering calls about the lost dogs she found on Christmas Day; hopefully they will be back in their rightful home soon.

Tuesday December 29th
I was passing Cotton's Flying U Rodeo at 7 am this morning headed to Lincoln to assist Cash's owner with his euthanasia. I fed Cash his last meal and met the vet at 8 am. Everything went well and after Cash had passed I talked with the vet on his estimated age and he said no younger than 30 and he only had 3 back teeth left. I must say I was relieved that Cash was not longer in pain and subject to the cold weather we have had lately. It must have been hard to keep his body temperature up with the little body fat he had left. Thanks to the concerned donor who brought Cash to Sammie's Friends attention, without your help Cash might still be suffering. RIP Cash.

I plan to visit Cash's owners again next week to discuss the 2 other young horses they own. We will be talking about training and the possibility of rehoming them to someone with more experience. It is not a good idea to get young, untrained horses when you have little horse experience. I suggested an older well broke gelding for the family and hopefully my suggestion will be well received. Cash’s owner mentioned to me on my was out that there were two other horses worse shape than he was when they picked him up. I doubt they are still there but I will follow up and make sure there are no suffering horses left at that house.
 After leaving Cash’s I was off to pick up Raz, a 15-year-old Appaloosa gelding with moon blindness and arthritis. His owner sent him to BITS for our January euthanasia clinic, but after meeting Raz we believe he may have a chance to make it as a lead line horse or pasture pal. Dr. Tortosa will be out to evaluate him on Wednesday and talk about his current pain level, hopefully a little Bute is all he needs. Cross your fingers for this guy; he is just too sweet!

While picking Raz we also took in Bob a 5 year quarter horse gelding. The owner was being evicted and was trying to find him a home but ran out of time and asked that we find him a new home. She had contacted several rescues in the area, but was told she needed a $200 surrender fee before they would take him. Due to her current financial situation, she was unable to come up with the funds and was extremely grateful that were able to take him, no charge. Bob has a great disposition, he is trained to ride and he tied and trailered like a gentleman today.

Upon arrival back at the BITS headquarters, Bob and Raz were both de-wormed and placed in their stalls for the night. Raz is a little underweight so his blanket was on before night fall. Bob will be vaccinated tomorrow when Dr. Tortosa makes her appearance and hopefully if all goes well, Raz will too. Once Bob has been properly evaluated, he will be available for adoption. If you have any interest in him, please give us a call.

Wendsday December 30th
Not much excitement. A lot of phone calls to confirm our euthanasia clinic, which will be January 12th. The clinic will be offered for $100 a horse, which includes veterinarian administered euthanasia and professional pick up &rendering from Sacramento Rendering Co.

We have also confirmed that we have 9 available spots for the $50 gelding clinic. This clinic will be help February 13th and is available to all who qualify. For more information, please email us at or click here

Thursday December 31st
Today BITS got the best call ever! A friend of a friend, is moving and has sold all of his horses. He has about 20-30 newer t-posts and electrical fencing materials that he is willing to donate to BITS, if we come and take it all down. It took me less than a second to say "give me the address; this is an answer to our prayers." With more fencing, we are able to take on a few more horses and able to cut down on feed costs.

Since Deb was at work, I recruited a few great friends and we set out with some amazing equipment to remove t-posts, electrical rope and insulators.

Notice the 4 paw worker on top!
Many hands make light work, and after a couple of hours were loaded up and ready to head back home. I cannot thank our friends enough for sacrificing their New Year's Eve to help out BITS. We had a great time watching the kids work together and play in the fresh MUD!

All and all we came home with 1 light table, 10 acres worth of electrical rope and dozens and dozens of insulators for both t-posts and wood posts. It was a great day.

Friday January 1st
Well today is the day to put some t-posts in and get these horses out of the barn and into the sunshine (what little there is today). BITS hopes you enjoyed the Tournament of Roses Parade, we watched it on HGTV and are so proud of our young FFA kids! Wish us luck today and Happy New Years.

This week we are in need of: 
de-wormer, vaccinations, used halters & leadropes
Can you help?