Saturday, October 18, 2008

It Has Started...

Imaging hauling your horses up to a popular trail head and having a nice, enjoyable trail ride, only to return to find two, well cared for, recently shod, QH's, tied to your trailer. Sound unbelievable? Well it happened to the friend of one of my husbands co-workers this past week.
(Note: It was not the horses in the picture below. They belong to one of Trailblazer Martha's friends, and would not be abandoned by their owner...a two time Extreme Mustang Makeover winner)Thankfully the man has a large pasture and was able to take the horses home with him (I am not sure what he plans to do with them yet), but can you imagine???!!! On that same note, Amber and her friend Kristina took Waska to the house of one of Kristina's friends, to expose him to cows (she wants to try some sorting and penning on him), and the friend, who has a large pasture on a well traveled road, said that they woke up one morning with a half wild, approximately two year old, buckskin filly in it. Last I heard, they were still unable to catch her, but were feeding her. And this is only October folks!

Unfortunately things like this are going to keep happening, with our economy in shambles and hay, at least around here, going for around $25/bale. I also know that a lot of the rescue organizations are at maximum capacity, and in need of more donations (readFugly's blog and watch the nightly news), and I have no idea what is going to happen to the hundreds of horses out there that no one can afford to take care of. This conversation could go on and on, so I will end it here, but as a responsible horse owner, I am worried about the future of "the horse."
I wanted to get back on and say that Brown Eyed Cowgirls and Mrs. Mom have done some great posts in the recent past about this issue as well!!! Gotta give credit where credit is due! :)
The reason I mention Fugly and the news, is that Fugly is local, so a lot of the organizations that she talks about, also happen to be on my nightly news.


Mrs Mom said...

Miss Melanie-
No- that rant on yesterdays post was IN NOW WAY!!! directed at you. I promise! I'll explain it more in today's post. ;)

How is Bo feeling? Be sure to give him some love from this little corner of the world!!

And anytime you need help, please- fire away!!!

Melanie said...

Mrs. Mom-
I didn't really think that it was, but you just never know!
Can't wait to hear about what actually caused the!!!

Breathe said...

That's something else. I can't imagine abandoning your horse - even at $25 a bale.

But times are getting harder and harder, with no end in sight...

20 meter circle of life said...

Wow, I am not even sure what to say. I cant imagine just leaving the boys.

Melanie said...

Breathe and Jewel-
I know!!! Can you imagine just tying your horses up to someone's trailer and walking away??? At least have the courtesy to leave a note or something!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Laughing Orca Ranch said...

(please excuse my delete. Way too many typos)

That happened around here, too.

A guy went into the tack store to get some supplies. He came outside, ready to load up his bags of feed and supplies in the trailer, and noticed a horse back there, with a note attached to it's rump, "Please take my horse. I can't afford to feed him anymore. Thank you".

I wonder what I would do? What would you do?

It's crazy how many horses in our are are being offered for free or only a couple hundred dollars. But things are getting tough. We're paying $8-$10 a bale here, and in some places in NM, hay is running $12-20 a bale!


Gail said...

On leaving the horses, at least they did it before they were half starved. I have seen many animals starving and the law will not bother unless a vet says they are "in imminent danger of dying"! How long do you wait?? I could never abandon an animal of any sort. Both your friends are very kind by taking them in even though it may be a hardship. What is happening???

Melanie said...

Lisa and Gail-
That is the question...what do, or would, we do? I hope that none of us ever have to find out!
And $8-$10/bale??? I knew I wanted to move to NM for some!!!

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

I think it is slowly dawning on EVERYONE. The extent is even dumbfounding to many of my local friends. It's not just certain areas that are facing this, it is affecting every corner of the US and we are affecting Canada's market too.

I heard the other day, that a nearby sale barn had to hire 24 hour security to patrol their pens, after they had already put chains and locks on all of the exterior gates. People were taking gates off hinges to dump horses in the pens or just tying them to the fence in the middle of the night. The people who worked there had to start chaining and locking the gates shut on their horse trailers because they would be working a sale, come out after and find their trailers full of horses. The sale barn owner was having to pay $125 per horse to have them put to sleep and removed.

A friend of the family took a really nice mare to another sale the other day. Guards were walking the line of vehicles and trailers making sure that no one was unloading horses before they checked in. He thought that was weird so he pulled out of line and when in to see what was going on-the sale was over-they had stopped it because nothing was selling and people were begging anyone at the sale to take their horses-for free. He found out that registerable foals were selling for a $1-$5. Yearlings to 3-4y/o's were bringing about $20(broke or not) and the nicest saddle horse there went for $250-a 6y/o, registered, broke ranch/rope horse.

He took his mare home. He figured it would cost him more to unload her than she would bring. He asked my mom if she wanted her...for free!

Such a sad and scary time for horses.

allhorsestuff said...

Nice new look~I say!
Matches your horsey face too!

WHOA! I am shocked..truely. Despirate times indeed.But never would I,or could I. I would rather
just ask for help!

Train Wreck said...

They never came back for them!? Are you serious! I can't believe it!How sad. I hope it gets better soon. Such a scary time for all. I love your new look! Very Nice!

Trailboss said...

OMG I had to read that twice. I have a friend that is giving away her 6 horses. It's not that she can't afford to feed them it's that she has several minatures plus dogs and her mother is terminal and living with her. She has to be turned every 2 hours and my friend just can't do it all anymore. She has some nice horses too. I want to take a mare of hers but I am still 'working' on my husband. We have enough hay plus this baby is so very sweet. She's a gray and loves to be the center of attention. Here's hopeing I get my way!

Andrea said...

It's just the beginning. We just got a horse that is perfectly sane from the sale barn. He was bought for 225 bucks. Which I think is not too bad. But at least there are people still buying horses at the sale barns here. There are way too many horses and not enough homes. I might sound horrible for saying this, but I would rather see a horse used for meat than left to die starving in a pasture.

Denise- LessIsMore17 said...

These stories are so sad:-( and yet people just keep breeding and breeding.

Stephanie said...

Man I don't know what I would do if that were to happen to me! I wouldn't have room to get them all home that's one thing for sure.

I have heard of this happening but to no one I know of yet.

A few folk have approached my trainer and through an agreement "given" him horses - and he has found good homes for them while feed them in the mean while but no one has dumped horses on him yet.

But they are all in a bad situation - it kind went like "please take my horse and find him a good home I can't even afford to buy hay this month..." At least they didn't starve them or dump them though.

And you're right I think its something that we will see more and more of until the economy rights itself.

Heidi said...

One of the boarders at my barn was on a trail ride recently and when they got back to their trailer, there was a full rig- truck and trailer- with two horses tied to it and a note that said something like, "Please take care of my horses because I can't anymore." I can't even imagine how sick I would feel if I ran into that myself. It makes me queasy just reading and hearing about it!

Five O'Clock Somewhere said...

I cannot imagine how horrible thing must get to have to give up your horses! All these stories are so sad!

Adventures Of A Horse Crazed Mind said...

OMG- I have never heard of that before! That is horrible! Wow! I feel bad for the horse and for the people too...though I'd never do that I cant imagine feeling that desperate. Yikes!