What is the function of your program?
This is not an adoption or rescue program for unwanted horses, but rather a long term grazing/pasture agreement. The whole concept of the program is to allow for a "natural" life of retirement for the horse. The horse will not be utilized in any form or fashion, and is
allowed to run as a "wild" horse. We keep the horse willing to approach humans by spending time walking through the herd, hand feeding cubes, and inspecting each horse on a regular basis using natural horsemanship methods that do not cause any stress to the horses.
What if our horse has been stabled rather than pasture raised?
New enrollees will be "soft released" into this program by slowly tapering them off of hay/grain and allowing them to adapt to range life in their own time. This will be done by allowing them access to hay/grain while at the same time allowing them to venture out into
small pastures or turn-out areas as they become used to behaving naturally. Horses are like people in that each one is an individual and acclimation time will be different for each one. Again, they will be allowed to acclimate at their own speed with hay/grain available to
them during this time.
How do you transition new horses into an established herd?
Herd dynamics can be an issue, as every horse has a distinctive personality and need for autonomy. With new retirees, we have found using one of our own retired horses with a "been there, done that" mentality in a smaller pasture to be a great way to introduce a new
horse to retirement. After a relationship is established (which doesn't take long given the horse's natural need for companionship), a third seasoned horse is introduced. In horse language, three horses equal a herd, and become a unit. Bringing the "unit" into the main herd is a smooth transition; we have never had a new retiree injured by another horse using this technique.
Will you provide veterinary services?
Ron is able to address most common veterinary ailments as he has been a "practical" ranch vet for over 35 years. If a horse is obviously in a distressed situation that Ron is unable to remedy, vet services are available. If possible, enrollee will be contacted before vet services are engaged, and the associated costs will be the responsibility of the horse owner. Horses living in large natural pastures do not experience the common physical ailments assoiciated with stabled horses.
Are all horses accepted into the program?
This program is available to open mares and geldings over the age of 18 that have current health papers and a negative Coggins test. No bred mares or intact stallions will be accepted. An exception to this is a bred mare program whereby we pasture brood mares that will be removed before foaling. Bred mares will be kept in separate pastures from retired or turn-out horses.
Who will oversee the care of the animals?
The ranch is a working cattle and horse ranch with Janet and Ron living at the headquarters and providing primary care. Ron and Janet monitor horses to ensure all conditions are optimum for horse health.
What if my horses is not accustomed to running or living in a herd with other horses?
Horses are herd animals,and instinctively gregarious. When allowed to "run wild" in unlimited space, they naturally form peer bands. Each band works out its own social order and each horse has his own position in that order. With unlimited space to roam, this is not
How can I stay updated on my horse's welfare?
We are happy to send current photos on a seasonal basis, and we frequently post photos on our FaceBook page.