Adopting From a Rescue: What You Need To Know
Adding a horse to your family is always a happy feeling, but it can be especially rewarding when you know that you’re giving a home to a needy animal and supporting a nonprofit at the same time. Not everything about rescue horse adoption is always smooth sailing, however. Here is everything you need to know before making your decision.
Know What To Expect From Horse Ownership
If you haven’t owned a horse before, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with what horse ownership will mean before any horse adoption takes place. Taking lessons or leasing a horse is a good place to start. There are a number of books on various aspects of horsemanship that you can also consult.
Suffice to say that horse ownership is a responsibility equal to their size. If you don’t have property they can live on, you have to find a safe, reputable place to board them, which can be expensive; and if you do have horse property, that means that seeing to all their basic needs (enough food, clean water, safe pasture or pens, and frequent checks on their health and physical well-being) falls to you. Plus you’ll have routine care such as farrier and vet, as well as any emergency care that comes up.
Be Ready for a Rescue Horse’s Needs
On top of the normal expectations of ownership, rescue horse adoption may have additional responsibilities. For instance, feeding a horse is a delicate enough business, but a rescue may have special dietary needs in order to gain or maintain the proper weight. Or you may find that in addition to the normal training you expect to put into a horse, your rescue has special issues that require additional work and patience. A good rescue will have provided rehab and care before placing a horse up for adoption, and will also help you overcome these challenges as much as possible, but it’s important to know what you may be facing.
Research the Horse Rescue
Unfortunately, not every horse rescue is reputable. Some may not be forthcoming about a horse’s issues in the hopes of getting it adopted out. Others may be taking advantage of their 501(c)(3) designation. Do a little research and find out what other people’s experiences were with a rescue before you consider rescue horse adoption with them.
Be Prepared To Sign a Contract
Finally, be aware that any good rescue will ask you to sign a horse adoption contract. A reputable rescue’s first responsibility is to their horses, and to ensure that the animals will continue to be cared for their entire lives. Read the contract through all the way, but don’t be surprised if they set requirements for care and require that the horse be returned to them if you ever cannot or do not want to care for it any longer.
The Rewards of Rescue Horse Adoption
It’s important to go into the adoption with a clear understanding of what to expect, but this doesn’t mean that all rescues are this way. Rescues have a lot of perfectly good horses that have simply been relinquished by owners fallen on tough times. And if you do choose to open your heart to a needy rescue, you’ll find it’s one of the most rewarding parts of horse ownership.
Rescue horses are frequently victims of neglect, so sometimes all they need to be healthy and happy is a consistent, healthy diet. For more information about how our complete feeds can help, contact Sacate Pellet Mills today.