HLSS News May. Issue
Welcome to HLSS news May. issue! This month we have some cool stuff! So have fun and enjoy!Oh and don't forget to comment and contribute. ;)
The Unwanted Horse Problem:the unwanted horse coalition is leading the fight. What it is and how you can help!!!
from the unwanted horse coalitions official site:unwantedhorsecoalition.org
Washington, DC – January 6, 2009. History has shown that when the economy falls on hard times, animals are among the first to suffer. Numerous media reports suggest that the problem of unwanted horses is growing by the day. Some might even go so far as to say the horse community is in uncharted territory with the issue. People can argue about why the numbers are increasing, but the current state of the economy has left many horse owners in serious financial hardship, forcing them to make the decision to part with their horses. The bottom line is too many of these horses need a place to go.
Responsible owners are doing their best to find new homes and uses for their horses so that they don’t become unwanted. The Unwanted Horse Coalition has urged owners to surrender their horses to organizations that can use them, retrain them or give them a new home.
“These organizations take your horse when you have no other options, care for it, and work tirelessly to find it another life. Now the rescue facilities are starting to brim over their capacity and many of these organizations need your help,” said Julia Andersen, director of the UHC.
While a donation of money, feed, hay, and other supplies is an urgent need for rescues, nothing can replace adoption. “If you are interested in taking in a horse, or in the market to buy one, why not check out the adoptable horses first? Horse owners and breeders are particularly wellsuited to help with these horses,” suggests Andersen.
“Many people are under the impression that the horses put up for adoption are old, lame, or physically undesirable. However the Unwanted Horse Coalition gets calls daily from people who have perfectly sound horses with a lot of life in them, but sadly the owners are not able to keep them for many different reasons. Certainly many are also older horses or horses that cannot be ridden. Both types are in need of homes,” said Andersen.
The horse adoption process varies depending on the organization. Most require that you get to know the horse before you adopt it. This helps to ensure that you and your potential horse are suited for each other. “Frankly, this is a good idea even if it’s not required by the organization,” said Andersen. Another typical requirement is that the organization will conduct a home or barn visit to check up on the horse. Some organizations will even continue to visit you and your horse over time. This is a very responsible action by an organization, as they must make sure you are giving the horse proper nutrition, shelter, and care. Some organizations may even retain ownership for a period until they deem your care up to their health and safety standards. Finally, it is not uncommon for facilities to charge a small adoption fee. This fee helps to cover the expenses the facility incurred during the time the horse was at the facility.
If you are interested in adopting a horse and have never owned a horse before, there’s much you need to know about horse care. Adopting a horse is not like adopting a dog or cat. Even if the adoption process is similar, caring for a horse is more time–consuming, more expensive, and requires a facility — either your own or a boarding farm. For more information on the many responsibilities of horse ownership, please see the UHC’s “Own Responsibly” handbook, which can be downloaded from the UHC website, www.unwantedhorsecoalition.org.
“If you are someone whose life had been enriched by horses, now is the time to ask what you can do for them in return,” said Andersen. The UHC urges anyone able to adopt a horse to take action now and contact a local rescue facility. All of the rescues in the country do not have the capacity or means to take in all of the unwanted horses. UHC Chairman Dr. Tom Lenz advises people to buy rather then breed, adopt rather than buy, find alternative careers, and euthanize rather than discard. Again, these horses need your help. If you do not know of a rescue facility in your area, please visit www.unwantedhorsecoalition.org to see facility listings by state.
The Unwanted Horse Coalition The mission of the Unwanted Horse Coalition is to reduce the number of unwanted horses and improve their welfare through education and the efforts of organizations committed to the health, safety and responsible care and disposition of these horses. The UHC grew out of the Unwanted Horse Summit, which was organized by the American Association of Equine Practitioners and held in conjunction with the American Horse Council’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in April 2005. The summit was held to bring key stakeholders together to start a dialogue on the unwanted horse in America. Its purpose was to develop consensus on the most effective way to work together to address the issue. In June 2006, the UHC was folded into the AHC and now operates under its auspices
to learn more about UHC visit their official site at :www.Unwantedhorsecoalition.org
Show Solutions: Dealing with Disaster
What should you do when things go wrong at a show?
By Cindy Hale
April 23, 2009
Talk about humiliation and frustration! When your best laid plans begin to unravel in the show arena, it feels like the entire world is watching. Should you try to salvage your performance or simply admit defeat and slink out the gate? Here’s a quartet of calamities and suggestions on how to make the best of them.
* “Can I Get There From Here?” Despite staring at a course or pattern all morning, you get about halfway through and suffer a mental lapse. Truly, you have only three options, and none of them will earn you a high score. One is to seek help from your coach, who can guide you from the rail. Another is to halt, acknowledge the judge, and exit gracefully. Or, if you’re the creative type, you can design your own impromptu path to the end for everyone’s entertainment. If you have these frequent trips to the Twilight Zone, you need to figure out the best way to memorize courses and patterns, whether it’s drawing it on paper and tracing it with your fingers, reciting it aloud to your coach, or closing your eyes and envisioning yourself riding it correctly. Until horses come equipped with GPS devices, you’ll have to stretch your mental muscles.
* “Thar She Blows!” Trying to ride a frisky horse through a large class is like sitting atop a powder keg with a lit fuse. You know that with any provocation your horse is going to explode. Again, you have options. One is to ride defensively and avoid traffic jams, because they’ll send your high horse into overdrive. Another is to make a few circles to keep your rambunctious horse focused on you and your aids. But perhaps the best option is the most courteous one. Ride your horse at the walk to the center of the arena and then politely ask the judge if you may be excused from the class. In most instances, your horse’s tense, excessive animation had already been noted by the judge, so you weren’t going to place, anyway. Rather than disrupting the entire class with your horse’s antics, play the role of hero and retire. Then head for the warm-up ring or snap on the longe line and give your horse a chance to exorcise his inner demons. Once he’s settled down, enter another class and try again.
* “No, the Other Left Lead!” Though judges are notorious for seeing everything, they often miss a lot that happens in the show pen or arena. They have to juggle taking notes, reconfiguring the class placings and giving commands to the announcer along with watching the class. That’s why even if your horse blows a lead or breaks gait, try not to fall apart. Depending on the type of class and level of competition, a few misbegotten strides won’t necessarily eliminate you from the ribbons. If your horse’s performance and your horsemanship are truly superior to the rest of the exhibitors, you might only be dropped down a few pegs. So rather than being a drama queen when disaster strikes, play it cool, regain your composure and act as if nothing happened. Get back on track and carry on as if nothing happened.
* “Do I Even Know This Horse?” Greenies are notorious for getting to a show and suddenly forgetting half of what they seemed to know at home. In a showmanship class they forget how to square up. On a hunter course, they’re transfixed by the decorative shrubbery. Instead of becoming frustrated, however, you must remain calm. After all, you were the one who decided to take on the task of showing a baby. Consider the first year (or two) of showing to be your young horse’s education. Aim for successful, positive experiences. The judge will understand if you trot a few jumps rather than cantering them. And if you jog rather than lope the second direction in your western pleasure class, your horse will be better schooled to remain relaxed in his next class. And never be afraid of scratching a class if the jumps seem too high or the pattern too challenging. Even show time disasters can be beneficial if you’re patient and have a sense of humor.from: horsechannel.com
GOING GREENbr />
This month on going green we are talking about water! Do you know how much water you waist when you use your hose?whether for giving your favorite equine friend a bath or filling the water buckets think about how much you could save if you didn't leave it on while you fetched that bucket? Here are some ways you can reduce your water usage for very very cheap and very very easily!
Bring a friend! If your filling up buckets bring a buddy to help you save water! HAve them turn it on and off or make sure the hose stays in the bucket!
.If your giving your horse a bath slide on a hose attachment! It will only cost a few bucks and you'll get better results as well as not waisting water! An attachment can use less water while applying better water preasure.
Stop the leaks! Make sure your hose isn't leaking form the top or crack. Check it weekly and be sure to take good care of your hose! Make sure there isn't frozen water in it. That it is out of the way of animals and that it isn't in a too hot or cold place. To fix a crack two simple ways are to get some cheap plummers tape or duck tape both can be found at your local harware store. Or for a temporary quick fix get a bucket to put under the leaking area. Ofcourse the best solution is to get a new hose and take better care of it! it isn't that expensive! by: Emma
WOW!(rAndom stuff we think you should know!):
Did you know that if everyone in America didn't eat meat one day a week it would be the same as taking 1/2 a million cars off the road!!!!!1/2 a million!!!!!!!!so make the commitment today. It's only once a week it's easy free and you'll be making a difference.
Heres an awesome website we thought you might like!horse-games.org If theres a horse game worth playing they have it! so check it out!!!
Lexington, KY - A new state law aimed at helping horse boarding operations deal with fiscally abandoned animals is "going to allow people in the boarding business to stay in business and to be more profitable," according to Ginny Grulke, director of the Kentucky Horse Council.
Signed into law by Governor Steve Beshear on March 24, Kentucky House Bill 331 will directly impact certain segments of the equine industry and some horse owners. The new law goes into effect on June 25.
Grulke credited veterinarian Dr. T. Douglas Byars, who serves on the KHC board, with making the members of the legislature aware of the need for the law. In November 2008, Grulke testified before the Kentucky House of Representatives Agriculture Subcommittee in support of the legislation, which is classified as an agisters lien.
Grulke said that until this law goes into effect, unless the owners of boarding stables have a contract with a specific provision giving them the right to sell the horse in case of nonpayment, they must feed and care for all horses abandoned in their care for a year before they can sell them. If the stable owners do not pay for the abandoned horses' feed and veterinary care, they can be charged with animal abuse.
But even though most stable owners would put the welfare of abandoned horses above financial returns, they often can't afford to pay to keep another horse. They are losing additional money — the boarding fee — because that abandoned horse is occupying a stall that can't be leased to another paying customer.
Madelyn Millard has boarded horses for years at her Goose Creek Stables, located at Waterwild Farm. Millard explained, "Unlike car repair shops where [nonpaying] customers may not pick up their cars, a horse must be cared for and maintained. In a year's time, the money spent to care for an abandoned horse can very quickly exceed the value of that horse."
When Millard began boarding horses, she was told that the custom was to trust the owners to pay for their board on time, that a "gentlemen's agreement" existed among horse people. "Well so much for gentlemen," she said. "We spent way too much time and energy going after money and refusing to release horses until bills were paid, and it was just very stressful."
Now Millard requires that boarding customers pay for their horses in advance — "just like renting an apartment for your horse, I tell them" — and sign a contract with a 30-day notice of termination of lease. Even so, she has had people "who choose to walk away from their horses."
The problem of fiscally abandoned horses is especially acute for small boarding stables. Having to pay out of pocket for a year for the care of just one or two horses, plus losing the boarding fees on the stalls they occupy, can make the difference in profit or loss for a small equine boarding operation.
These stable owners are the people who will benefit most from HB 331, for they are more likely to be operating without having paid a lawyer to draw up a contract with the provision that they can sell the animal in case of nonpayment.
Sponsored by Representative Royce Adams and Senator Damon Thayer, the new law had a quick passage through both legislative branches. Not even the trial lawyers opposed the bill, even though it allows a broken contract to be settled without going through a court process or requiring the services of an attorney. Grulke said the lack of opposition was probably because "it was seen as a pro-business bill."
Provisions of the new law allow people providing care for animals to sell the animal after not receiving payment for its care for 45 days. They must make certain efforts to notify the animal's owner in writing of intent to sell for reason of nonpayment.
While the new law will be a boon to owners of boarding stables and kennels, especially those operations with smaller margins of profit, it also means that horse owners in poor economic circumstances will be more likely to lose their horses.
from: Buisness Lexington
wild horse murders
CALGARY -- Three wild horses - including a pregnant mare - have been felled by gunshots, the latest in a string of unsolved equine killings in central Alberta.
The gruesome slaughter was reported to Olds-based advocacy group Wild Horses of Alberta Society by a concerned citizen who spotted the slain animals about 30 km west of Sundre on Tuesday night.
"I actually broke down and cried this morning - it just tore our hearts out," WHOAS president Bob Henderson said yesterday.
"They were just standing on the hillside, not bothering anybody, only to be shot from the road by some spineless coward."
Killed were a four-year-old stallion, a yearling colt and the mare of undetermined age, just days away from giving birth.
"When she collapsed, her birth sac came out of the back so the foal was right there, probably ready to come out," said Henderson, a retired Calgary cop.
"So technically, it's four horses that are dead. I just don't understand it ... this is so needless."
Formed in 2001, WHOAS promotes public awareness and protection of the roughly 200 feral horses in the eastern slopes.
It also rounds up those equines which have run afoul of landowners, including 15 recovered last weekend from a leased grazing area.
But the latest tragedy represents a heavy blow, galloping hot on the heels of last December's discovery of another bullet-riddled dead horse.
"It was shot in the area where we've previously found over the last four years, five years now, 20 other horses shot and killed," said Henderson.
And on New Year's Day 2007, Henderson came across two foals and a mare gunned down near Sundre.
Mounties and provincial officials went to the scene yesterday to investigate the latest incident.
The horses' bodies were removed for further investigation and to prevent grizzly bears from being attracted to the area, said Don Livingston of Sustainable Resource Development.
"It's a Criminal Code offence so it would be completely up to the judge ... it could be some jail time and a fine," said Livingston.
'It was like this light went on'
Equine program provides therapy and comfort to autistic children
April 30, 2009
By JUDY MASTERSON
GURNEE -- Children with autism and other disabilities are finding help on horseback through a Gurnee equine therapy program.
Diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at age 3, Charlie Sims had difficulty interacting with people. He didn't even like looking at them, said his mother, Annamaria Sims of Lake Zurich.
Mary Sims, 4, the daughter of Annamaria and Jeffrey Sims of Lake Zurich, works with trainers during a horse-riding lesson at Fields and Fences Equestrian Center in Gurnee.
(Joe Shuman/Special to the News-Sun)
Charlie Sims, 7, gets ready for his horse-riding lesson.
Partners for Progress
Partners for Progress equine therapy program operates at Fields and Fences Equestrian Center, 36550 N. Hunt Club Road, Gurnee.
Health insurance may reimburse for treatment costs, according to Diane Helgeland, executive director.
Call the program at (847) 226-1300, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Web site at www.partnersforprogressnfp.org .
Sims and her husband, Jeffrey, decided to combine Charlie's love of animals with behavioral therapy and enrolled him at Partners for Progress, which operates at Fields and Fences Equestrian Center, 36550 N. Hunt Club Road.
"We were trying to get into his world," said Sims, 37, who works full-time as an account manager for a database company. "The minute he walked in there, it was like this light went on."
While Charlie, now 7, found human beings threatening, he bonded almost immediately with the gentle horses who carried him and comforted him at Partners for Progress.
"An animal doesn't demand you know how to say words," Sims said. "Charlie doesn't have to concentrate on what a horse is saying. He doesn't have to talk to the horse but the funny part is, he wanted to."
Charlie, who receives special education services through Lake Zurich schools, feels safe atop a horse, with adults guiding him on either side. And the weekly therapy sessions have built trust between Charlie and his parents.
"It's a confirmation that Mom and Dad understand him," Sims said.
Charlie's sister, Mary, 4, who also has autism, is also enrolled in Partners. Riding a horse has helped her learn how to focus and control her impulse to bolt about.
Horseback riding strengthens the upper torso, a boon to autistic children, who tend to lack upper-body musculature, and have trouble speaking and concentrating. The exercise builds muscles that strengthen the jaw, improving speech, and forces the young rider to focus.
Riders also learn balance, self-confidence and social interaction skills.
"We use the horse as a treatment tool," said Diane Helgeland, executive director of the program, which is overseen by a licensed occupational therapist. "Horses are very non-judgemental. They can be very forgiving. They mirror how the kids are feeling. If you act scared, they're going to act scared. If you panic, they panic. For at-risk kids, those are things to process."
Children who, like Charlie and Mary Sims, take part in the hippotherapy program, work to meet carefully planned goals such as following directions and becoming comfortable in a saddle.
"For kids who are tactiley defensive, they get on and it's magical what the horses can do for them," Helgeland said. "There's nothing you can do in a clinic that we can't duplicate on a horse."