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View Full Version : Couple of older, low level event horses in New Hampshire looking for new homes....



Cherry
Feb. 15, 2010, 06:00 AM
Please see this thread:
http://chronofhorse.com/forum/showthread.php?t=244236 .

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 16, 2010, 12:12 AM
This is heartbreaking for me. My daughter and I donated one of these horses. We donated her for the BREEDING program. They bred her twice with frozen semen one cycle and she didn't take. So they put her in the school program. She was one of their best horses and has given her all for 8 or 9 years, in THEIR school program. Now they are emailing and posting everywhere about getting rid of her.

Is this really the norm? Do schools use them up and then expect you to take them back or harass you about them? I think it's horrible. They should either guarantee these horses a good quality of life or stop accepting donations. I will NEVER donate another horse. This has been such a miserable experience, and a true nightmare for my daughter.

Please think twice if you are considering donating your horse. It will come back to haunt you!

IFG
Feb. 16, 2010, 07:32 AM
This is heartbreaking for me. My daughter and I donated one of these horses. We donated her for the BREEDING program. They bred her twice with frozen semen one cycle and she didn't take. So they put her in the school program. She was one of their best horses and has given her all for 8 or 9 years. Now they keep calling us and emailing and posting everywhere about getting rid of her.

Is this really the norm? Do schools use them up and then expect you to take them back or harass you about them? I think it's horrible. They should either guarantee these horses a good quality of life or stop accepting donations. I will NEVER donate another horse. This has been such a miserable experience, and a true nightmare for my daughter.

Please think twice if you are considering donating your horse. It will come back to haunt you!

IMHO, they are being very responsible. They are doing their best to find an older horse a good home in a crappy economy. They have offered her back to you rather than failing to inform you, as I have heard other schools have done. Reading this board, UNH's behavior seems stellar in this situation. I have heard of other schools sending unwanted horses to auction. BTW, I have no relation to UNH.

JanWeber
Feb. 16, 2010, 08:23 AM
I guess it's a good thing you have your own farm so that you are in a good position to take her back.

Gayla
Feb. 16, 2010, 08:28 AM
This is heartbreaking for me. My daughter and I donated one of these horses. We donated her for the BREEDING program. They bred her twice with frozen semen one cycle and she didn't take. So they put her in the school program. She was one of their best horses and has given her all for 8 or 9 years. Now they keep calling us and emailing and posting everywhere about getting rid of her.

Is this really the norm? Do schools use them up and then expect you to take them back or harass you about them? I think it's horrible. They should either guarantee these horses a good quality of life or stop accepting donations. I will NEVER donate another horse. This has been such a miserable experience, and a true nightmare for my daughter.

Please think twice if you are considering donating your horse. It will come back to haunt you!
Are you going to take her back? I am sure she gave her all to you as well. :)

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 16, 2010, 11:22 AM
I'm really amazed and disturbed by these responses. Yes, I have my own farm and it would be possible for me take her back. But that was not explained to me when I donated her--that they expected me to take her when they were "done" with her.

How many of your daughters' retired horses are you supporting on your farm, Jan? I already have a few...

Is this really what people expect from college programs? Do they never keep retired horses or have a protocol for retiring them? I mean, UNH has its own farm, too, and they have more room and help than I do to care for retired horses.

ADM7040
Feb. 16, 2010, 11:35 AM
This is heartbreaking for me. My daughter and I donated one of these horses. We donated her for the BREEDING program. They bred her twice with frozen semen one cycle and she didn't take. So they put her in the school program. She was one of their best horses and has given her all for 8 or 9 years. Now they keep calling us and emailing and posting everywhere about getting rid of her.

Is this really the norm? Do schools use them up and then expect you to take them back or harass you about them? I think it's horrible. They should either guarantee these horses a good quality of life or stop accepting donations. I will NEVER donate another horse. This has been such a miserable experience, and a true nightmare for my daughter.

Please think twice if you are considering donating your horse. It will come back to haunt you!



I am assuming that the 24 y.o. mare is the one that you are referring to in your ridiculous statement above. So she was about 16 when you donated her to the program and I bet she had "given her all" to you for quite some time, perhaps "8 or 9 years"? So I guess she was no longer competitive/sound for the work you wanted her to do, hence why you donated her to the "BREEDING" program. It seems as if they did something right by her because they had her sound enough for 8 or 9 more years in their riding program. Now they are looking to place her in a good, safe home for her retirement (same thing that YOU did!) and you are screaming foul? Do you have any idea how ridiculous and callous YOU are coming across to others? There is certainly no mention by you about what YOU are trying to do to help your old servant. Why don't YOU take her back? Where is YOUR responsibility to the mare? This is a "nightmare" for your daughter, how about the mare? Well, how lucky for both that UNH is offering you the mare so that YOU can make this better for your daughter and the mare and re-unite them at YOUR farm/expense.

While I understand that not everyone can take an old horse back who needs a home, the OP comes across as a total HYPOCRITE for screaming foul that someone else is not doing something that SHE is ALSO not willing to do.

I hope that UNH is successful in finding good, loving homes for all of these horses.

Bacchus
Feb. 16, 2010, 11:36 AM
I would never donate my horse (or any horse) to a school, unless they signed papers saying the horse had a good, forever home with them (no "testing," either). Or, unless they promised to return the horse to me in good form for no cost.

I have heard horror stories about donated horses being sold at auction to pay for other horses/programs, being used for "science projects," etc. They really are not truthful to people about what can/will happen to their horses.

Unless an owner told the school they wanted to be contacted when the school was "done" with the horse, the school should not have contacted them. The schoool needs to find a home for horses it takes on. However, if a horse ends up at auction or being used for science projects, the previous owner cannot be upset about it, unless they had a contract and were told no such thing would ever happen to the horse.

FairWeather
Feb. 16, 2010, 11:46 AM
Do you expect them to keep the horses forever? What would you have them do? At least they aren't dumping them at auction like so many other schools.

Bacchus
Feb. 16, 2010, 12:30 PM
Sorry, but I can see Mary's point. It doesn't sound as if they contacted her one time to let her know they were trying to re-home the horse. That would be fine. It sounds as if they are repeatedly contacting her and bothering her about it. That is not OK!

She donated the horse for whatever reason. Yes, her daughter used this horse, but that doesn't mean they are responsible for it forever. They donated it for a good purpose, and there is nothing wrong with that. The school is now responsible for this horse, and they should find it a good home, which they are trying to do. How many of you would take back every horse you ever owned if the person, group, etc., that now has it doesn't want it anymore? Give me a break.

Now, Mary cannot be upset that they are trying to find another home for the horse. She cannot be upset if they send the horse to auction or straight to Mexico, for that matter, unless they signed an agreement that said they, personally, would give the horse a good, forever home.

(Personally, my horses all have forever homes, so I'll never have to worry about it. I recently traded a nasty mare I had for a short time for a gelding, but the mare went to a good home. And, yes, if they contacted me and said they were going to send the horse to a bad place if I didn't take it, I'd take it. But, I have the resources to do so. I'm not saying I wouldn't find the mare another home or even have her put down, because I hate the mare, but I would take her before I knowingly let something bad happen to her.)

saje
Feb. 16, 2010, 01:00 PM
Perhaps they are calling her repeatedly in the hopes that they don't have to resort to sending the horse to auction? I'd call more than once too, because someone who is known to have cared for the horse once upon a time is probably a better bet than hoping a stranger will take in a retiree.

When you sell or donate a horse you have no control over what happens to it anymore. If you want control, don't transfer ownership.

Personally, if I were in that situation, I'd be busting my butt to find a place for the mare, or I'd take her back myself. If I really couldn't keep her and couldn't find a good spot for her to retire, I'd give her a pampered month or two and then euthanize her.

Far better that than going to auction.

JanWeber
Feb. 16, 2010, 01:09 PM
Just my opinion, of course - but I'd take her back if I cared anything about her and free lease her to someone with the understanding that I'd be her final home. My (very) small barn houses my 31-year old retired junior jumper who is slowly, but surely, losing his eyesight; the horse we adopted from another college because he was unsuitable for their community lesson program, we rehabbed and free-leased through the COTH giveaways.

monstrpony
Feb. 16, 2010, 01:48 PM
Trust me on this--institutions of higher learning do NOT have the budgets to support equipment that is no longer useable. They "surplus" it. It's how the system works, especially state schools. I don't care how big their facility is, everything there is "property" and is dealt with the same way.

If they are calling at all to find a genuine retirement home, they are going above and beyond.

I don't see how anyone could expect one of these programs to provide a "forever" home. And if they did, and you were a taxpayer in that state, you'd scream bloody murder.

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 16, 2010, 01:54 PM
Is this really what people expect from college programs? Do they never keep retired horses or have a protocol for retiring them? I mean, UNH has its own farm, too, and they have more room and help than I do to care for retired horses.


yes...I would not expect any college program to keep a horse for life and give them a retirement. You get the tax write off when you donate them. The good programs try and find homes for the horses or let you take them back when they are retired. Not so good programs...run them through the auction.

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 16, 2010, 01:56 PM
I am assuming that the 24 y.o. mare is the one that you are referring to in your ridiculous statement above. So she was about 16 when you donated her to the program and I bet she had "given her all" to you for quite some time, perhaps "8 or 9 years"? So I guess she was no longer competitive/sound for the work you wanted her to do, hence why you donated her to the "BREEDING" program. It seems as if they did something right by her because they had her sound enough for 8 or 9 more years in their riding program. Now they are looking to place her in a good, safe home for her retirement (same thing that YOU did!) and you are screaming foul? Do you have any idea how ridiculous and callous YOU are coming across to others? There is certainly no mention by you about what YOU are trying to do to help your old servant. Why don't YOU take her back? Where is YOUR responsibility to the mare? This is a "nightmare" for your daughter, how about the mare? Well, how lucky for both that UNH is offering you the mare so that YOU can make this better for your daughter and the mare and re-unite them at YOUR farm/expense.

While I understand that not everyone can take an old horse back who needs a home, the OP comes across as a total HYPOCRITE for screaming foul that someone else is not doing something that SHE is ALSO not willing to do.

I hope that UNH is successful in finding good, loving homes for all of these horses.

Wow, ADM, I don't know who you are or why you are so incredibly callous and rude, but you have totally misunderstood and misrepresented the situation.

We bought Keeper as a 12 year old. She competed with my daughter for 1.5 years until she was diagnosed with a very severe heart murmur and we were told to NEVER RIDE HER AGAIN as it would be very dangerous.

Naturally, we kept her and took very good care of her. As the next 3 years passed (while she was retired on our farm) she showed no progression of the heart problems.

She was not happy just being retired, so we considered her as a broodmare as she was very well bred. We took her back to Tufts and they agreed we might try breeding her. Most breeding farms did not want an older, maiden mare, so we bred her once and she produced a lovely filly (who we trained and sold.)

We then learned that UNH was looking for TB broodmares for their "Breeding Program". At the time, they had Pik L and wanted to breed him to nice TB mares. THAT was what we donated her for. She was not even supposed to be ridden AT ALL according to the vets. She was in impeccable condition and completely sound when we donated her, but the heart murmur prevented other situations, and she was young, healthy and loved having her filly.

We did the right thing by this mare, and I will make sure she either comes here or goes to another safe home. BUT, I do NOT appreciated being made a villian in a situation where we have always tried to take the very best care of this mare and find her the best home.

UNH did not follow the intent of the donation at all. I DO have the means to take her back, and I WILL. Not everyone CAN take back their donated horse, and I think it is wrong of schools to accept donations and not be held responsible for their retirements. THAT is my beef with UNH. What are you not understanding about that opinion?

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 16, 2010, 02:04 PM
yes...I would not expect any college program to keep a horse for life and give them a retirement. You get the tax write off when you donate them. The good programs try and find homes for the horses or let you take them back when they are retired. Not so good programs...run them through the auction.


We did NOT get any tax write-off when we donated this horse. I could never even get them to send me a letter stating what we had agreed to beforehand. They kept telling me it had to come through "the administration" who never sent us anything.

Maybe you all knew this information that donated horses are usually used up and thrown out. I didn't. I was led to believe she would live a wonderful life as a broodmare in a top-notch program, not spend her life as a schoolie.

Hopefully, other people reading this thread will learn that is the norm for donated horses and will make a more informed choice for their horses. I truly hope some good will come out of this thread.

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 16, 2010, 02:19 PM
that's ashame that you didn't know that then....did you ask the questions? Most of the programs that I researched before donating, you are able to get a tax write off (all schools you got one...some of the private programs no). You do also have to follow up and check on the horses. If they are not being used in the manner in which you agreed when you donated them....then you have to speak up and do something at that time.

Most breeding programs will put the mares down or run them through an auction. Never heard of one that retired an old broodmare.

I'm not saying you did anything wrong...and you are raising flags on issues and concerns when ever a person gives up ownership of a horse whether it is from selling them or donating them. But the obligation is on you to follow up if it is important to you.


Hopefully others will do their homework but this is NOT unusual for most institutions. And it is actually really nice that they are making an effort to find them good homes.

Beam Me Up
Feb. 16, 2010, 02:21 PM
Did UNH tell you that they would keep her beyond her breeding years?

Unfortunately colleges are not much different from private owners, in that whatever stipulations you place (such as not riding in your case) are almost impossible to enforce, and they too are reluctant to keep horses that aren't useful to them.

My sister donated a horse to a college in the same area, with the vet restriction that she not jump (why she was donated instead of sold privately). Sure enough, she became a jumping lesson horse. A few years later, when she wasn't holding up, she was given to a student there. (Which I believe is many college's preferred retirement option--to see if a student would take them home).

The 2 were happy together until she was no longer sound for riding at all, in her early 20s, and the student contacted my parents (who at the time had 1 kid in college, 1 just out, and were out of horses completely) to try to get them to take her back. They couldn't and I don't know what happened next.

It would have been wonderful if the school had not jumped her and allowed her a longer life as a schoolie. Or if it had chosen to retire her. Or if the student had chosen to retire her. But at the same time, if my family was not willing/able to do so, we can't be that bitter that others didn't/couldn't either.

I'm glad that your story will end better.

Fancy That
Feb. 16, 2010, 02:22 PM
It is a tax write off when you donate your horse to a school. Period. That is wierd/wrong that you didn't get one.

Schools are not expected to keep retired horses and provide a forever home. Many are sent to auction, experimented on or just euthanized. That is the reality.

I know this because I sent a TB mare to UC Davis for thier breeding program.

You are an amazing person to take such good care of that mare and try your best to find the perfect situation for her (breeding program at UNH) I think the only mis-step is thinking that a school would take care of a retired/older horse that doesn't have a use anymore. They simply don't operate that way.

Bless you for trying to find her a home again or providing her a home. It's too bad that UNH has put a bad taste in your mouth :(

VicariousRider
Feb. 16, 2010, 02:29 PM
This is why some people put horses down rather than donating them. Some people can't sleep at night not being sure where the horse will end up down the road. Once a horse even leaves a rescue there is nor guarantee that it won't eventually end up in a kill pen. It is naive to think otherwise.

Kudos to UNH for trying so vigorously to find great forever homes for these hard workers. Many don't even try....

altjaeger
Feb. 16, 2010, 03:00 PM
I would have been very upset to learn that a horse that I wouldn't ride was made a school horse at the place I donated her to when I had told them she wasn't to be ridden.

Mary you are a good person and I'm glad you are taking this horse back so her final years can be happy ones.

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 16, 2010, 03:02 PM
Thank you all for understanding the issue here. Clearly I was naive and optimistic in my view of the situation. We DID check up on the mare EVERY time we went to UNH (which is 4-5 times a year) and once found her with a horrible sore on her chin from a too tight halter. Other than that, we were assured of her care.

Two years ago they contacted me and said they were looking for a home that would include less work and did I want her back or have any ideas. I told them THEN that I would take her if they couldn't find a student or someone interested. I inquired last spring about whether they had found a home and did not get a reply. Silly me, assuming the best. They did NOT contact me recently before posting in the giveaways.

I WILL go get her as soon as the weather breaks. But I will also make it my lifelong duty to warn others NOT to make the same mistake.

RiverBendPol
Feb. 16, 2010, 03:45 PM
You guys need to lighten up just a little here. This mare has broken Mary's heart on many occasions, starting with the heart murmur diagnosis and continuing on through the donation process and the time the horse has been at UNH. Mary and her family ADORED the horse, the horse was treated like a queen while under their care. She had a gorgeous filly who was also treated like a queen. Since the mare went to UNH it has been a painful, worrisome time for them. I don't think I know a more meticulous horseman than Mary in Area 1. Dumping on her here isn't fair.

As for donation of horses, besides the fact that no horse of mine would EVER be quiet enough to actually give to a program, I am one of the ones who believes in a very strong return policy (I have 2 out on lease right now who will be heading home to me before too long). OR, I will put a horse down before running the risk of its having to face horror at the hands of others.

Best of luck, Mary. I know you'll do the right thing, no matter what the nay-sayers have to offer.

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 16, 2010, 03:56 PM
Thank you all for understanding the issue here. Clearly I was naive and optimistic in my view of the situation. We DID check up on the mare EVERY time we went to UNH (which is 4-5 times a year) and once found her with a horrible sore on her chin from a too tight halter. Other than that, we were assured of her care.

Two years ago they contacted me and said they were looking for a home that would include less work and did I want her back or have any ideas. I told them THEN that I would take her if they couldn't find a student or someone interested. I inquired last spring about whether they had found a home and did not get a reply. Silly me, assuming the best. They did NOT contact me recently before posting in the giveaways.

I WILL go get her as soon as the weather breaks. But I will also make it my lifelong duty to warn others NOT to make the same mistake.


That is so great that you will take her back...and that you had checked on her over the years. I also think it is a great idea to warn others. I do think many who donate horses to institutions or other programs are a bit naive about it. They don't know what questions to ask and they often have unrealistic expections. One of the biggest things to realize is a school is an institution....people change and policies change. It is not a decision to be taken lightly but in the right programs, donated horses can have a good life.

2boys
Feb. 16, 2010, 04:52 PM
I can't believe this school is getting "kudos" for seeking places to send these horses. This is the VERY LEAST these people should do. What other institutions do is mean and should not be tolerated. The paradigm needs to change here. :(

Mary, good for you. The mare is lucky to have you in her life. Hope the other 2 horses are as fortunate.

technopony
Feb. 16, 2010, 05:37 PM
Honestly, I'm impressed with UNH for how they are handling this situation (if it is indeed true that the horses will go only to an approved home). Most horses aren't donated to Universities because the owner wants to help the institution; they are donated so the owner can get rid of the horse quickly. As a college student, I was in charge of finding donation horses and placing horses that were no longer suitable for our program. It was very hard - personally, I feel that I am responsible in some way for every horse I have ever owned (which is why I'm never selling another one - its way too hard and expensive to keep track of them all!). But the college had a budget, and that's ALL they got. One year, the University said the riding program had to downsize... so it HAD to. There was no choice. Horses that were lame or otherwise unsuitable also just COULDN'T be kept. Now, I would have loved it if the University had given us more money. But that just isn't the way it works. At my school, it was actually university policy that we could not donate or give away any horses - so it was much more difficult to re-home them.

Do I think that maybe the school shouldn't have horses at all if it can't afford to keep them? Well, maybe. I don't really think anyone should have an animal if they can't afford to care for it forever. But this is unfortunately reality. I'm sure the UNH folks are doing the best they can in a situation they may not agree with. Mary, I'm sorry you were surprised at the outcome with your mare; honestly, if I hadn't been part of a college riding program, I probably would have no idea. I'm glad you can take your mare back, though. At least you have the opportunity... many owners never do.

VicariousRider
Feb. 16, 2010, 05:38 PM
I can't believe this school is getting "kudos" for seeking places to send these horses. This is the VERY LEAST these people should do. What other institutions do is mean and should not be tolerated. The paradigm needs to change here. :(

I agree that the paradigm needs to change but at least a positive solution is sought in this case rather than sending them to auction or some miserable end. UNH totally aside, the sickening reality is that many "unwanted" horses do not have advocates or ANYONE looking for a suitable home for them.

IMHO, UNH's actions are far preferred to some alternatives. Rather than berating them and discouraging programs like theirs from trying to find good solutions for the horses they can no longer keep, I think it best to reward people like these who are TRYING to do the right thing. There is always room for improvement but we have to start somewhere. I think that it is very important that the donor be contacted FIRST and given the first right of refusal. I agree with RiverBendPol that "return policies" are preferable although not all donors are able to take a horse back. In that case it seems like finding a good new home is the best option. I don't see how it is reasonable to expect a school to pay to keep a pasture pony unless they expressly promised to do so upon donation.

I have been through a similar experience. I sympathize with Mary and I wish her (and the horse) the best.

What I learned from my experience is the following:
1. With all rescues and donation programs get a WRITTEN statement of their "return" policy.
2. I <<personally>> would rather put a horse down than give it away without a return policy because of the horror stories that I have heard and experienced.
3. When we sell horses it is also possible for them to end up in sad predicaments.
4. It's often not the place that we give them to but the hands that they pass through after that which lead to unanticipated ends.
5. There are lots of great people out there doing great things for horses but you have to do VERY thorough research to find them.

I'm sorry to be such a debby downer, but I learned the hard way. And, as Mary said, I feel compelled to share what I learned.

BigRuss1996
Feb. 16, 2010, 05:51 PM
How many of you would take back every horse you ever owned if the person, group, etc., that now has it doesn't want it anymore? Give me a break.
(

Actually every horse we ever bred and/or sold (and that is quite a few in over 30 yrs) came with a no questions asked return to us policy. In all those years we only ever had 5 come home and 2 of those we bought back for a small fee as the people who had them felt they "had to get something for them." 2 were rehomed, 1 sadly was quite elderly and was euthanized shortly after coming home due to health issues and the other 2 stayed here until they got old and had to be put down. I have been fortunate to be able to keep every one of my personal horses I ever had until the day they die....but my family had a breeding farm so a few retirees weren't really noticed. We also kept our older broodies until their day came. I have been personally present for that day on more occaisions then I care to count at this point.
As for Mary's situation...I think you all need to cut her some slack she truely felt she had placed the horse in a good situation. A lot of people donate horse to schools not knowing what happens to them when the school can't keep them or doesn't want them anymore. It's sad for the horses and people really should be better educated about the true process at most schools. There are a few who DO retire them and they have forever homes but those programs are very rare especially with dwindling land to keep them on. I know we have a few writers on here....maybe someone needs to do an article on the process.

Cherry
Feb. 16, 2010, 08:20 PM
normally I don't come on this board but when I read about these horses on the "Giveaways" forum I felt compelled to link to the thread.... These horses looked as though they have been well taken care of and, being elderly, needed special homes where they could live out the remainder of their homes with someone who would love them and not overtax them.

I don't like what the school did with your horse once they got her and that's why I would never donate a horse anywhere!Like one of the posters said--people change, policies change, money dwindles, etc.... I don't want to be kept up night worrying about where my horse is and whether it's okay or not. :(

Having had a private girls' school nearby and seeing what happened to their excess horses that were donated (sold off or sent home with a student) made a big impression on me, and not in a good way.

I've just come to the conclusion that when one puts the fate of helpless animals into other people's hands the animals are screwed, for lack of a better term. It just comes down to the administration's whims.

That said, unless you were given an express written agreement that your horse would be retired there forever you had no expectation it would be so.

Sorry to open a can of worms but would you have known your mare was at risk if I hadn't posted the link?

I think the older horses look amazing for their ages and I was glad to see that the school was at least looking to place the older horses, and not just put them down. Older horses have a lot to offer riders who are just beginning and I don't think most of the oldsters get the respect they deserve.... ;) To me a horse isn't middle aged until it's twenty years old! :winkgrin: :lol:

enjoytheride
Feb. 16, 2010, 10:28 PM
I guess I don't understand why all the people on this BB tell someone who is having a hard financial time to "donate their horse to a college"

Then the same people get all up in arms when they find out you actually did that.

Then the same people act like everyone should know you shouldn't except a college to take a horse forever and ever until it dies.

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 17, 2010, 12:07 AM
Thank you all for turning this thread around to one of education and hope. And thank you especially, Pol, for your kind words and vote of confidence.

Just FYI, Cherry, I had just seen the giveaways post AND Pol had called it to my attention. I've been stewing and scheming about it over the weekend and have contacted UNH and informed them of my intention to "reclaim" my sweet girl. Of course, I just gave away all my smaller blankets and she has NEVER grown much of a coat....

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 17, 2010, 07:49 AM
I guess I don't understand why all the people on this BB tell someone who is having a hard financial time to "donate their horse to a college"

Then the same people get all up in arms when they find out you actually did that.

Then the same people act like everyone should know you shouldn't except a college to take a horse forever and ever until it dies.


Donating a horse to a college is a choice. If someone is having a hard financial time...it might be the right choice for them. But they do need to understand what the risks are with that choice. And I think that is what Mary's story brings to light.

Selling a horse has risks....donating a horse has risks. But a lot of good can come of it as well.....espcially if the owner is in a situation where they can no longer support the horse and may have limited choices. People just need to understand the risks, know what they can or do what they can to mitigate those risks and make the right decision for themselves.

2boys
Feb. 17, 2010, 07:54 AM
Donating a horse to a college is a choice. If someone is having a hard financial time...it might be the right choice for them. But they do need to understand what the risks are with that choice. And I think that is what Mary's story brings to light.

Selling a horse has risks....donating a horse has risks. But a lot of good can come of it as well.....espcially if the owner is in a situation where they can no longer support the horse and may have limited choices. People just need to understand the risks, know what they can or do what they can to mitigate those risks and make the right decision for themselves.

But it certainly doesn't make it OKAY.

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 17, 2010, 09:35 AM
But it certainly doesn't make it OKAY.


I disagree. I rode and took care of horses at a college before. They lived a very good life...better than many horses. Why wouldn't that be the right choice for some people and some horses? I think it is wrong if a school misleads someone.....but I disagree that it is never okay to donate a horse. That would be the same as saying it is never okay to sell a horse.... I suppose some people do believe that....but I don't.

2boys
Feb. 17, 2010, 09:51 AM
I disagree. I rode and took care of horses at a college before. They lived a very good life...better than many horses. Why wouldn't that be the right choice for some people and some horses? I think it is wrong if a school misleads someone.....but I disagree that it is never okay to donate a horse. That would be the same as saying it is never okay to sell a horse.... I suppose some people do believe that....but I don't.

When I say, "It is not okay", I am refering to institutions dumping horses when they are finished using them. The college where I rode treated their horses wonderfully while I was there. In recent years however, I have learned that they have been sending them to auctions. That is not okay.

bornfreenowexpensive
Feb. 17, 2010, 10:00 AM
When I say, "It is not okay", I am refering to institutions dumping horses when they are finished using them. The college where I rode treated their horses wonderfully while I was there. In recent years however, I have learned that they have been sending them to auctions. That is not okay.


Ah...well in that I do agree with you. And that is the scary part about donating, although it could happen even if you sell a horse or give it to an individual. But with an institution like a school...horse people are not always the ones making decisions. And a policy in place when you donate....may not be in place when it comes time for your horse to retire. Those that remember your request to be contacted (even if in writing)...may not be around or really remember and you may not be contacted. It really puts the obligation on you to keep an eye on the horse if that is important to you.

JanWeber
Feb. 17, 2010, 05:10 PM
What makes it particularly difficult in the case of "re-homing" with a college is that few, if any, will accept a free-lease horse as a "donation". It needs to be "theirs" to do with as they wish and if you're lucky, they'll call you when retirement time comes. By the way, this same caveat applies to therapeutic riding programs as well. If you truly must move a horse on for some reason as quickly as possible, the donation route may be your only choice. If you can wait until the right situation is found, it's a better option for both you and the horse.

Laddy Boy
Feb. 17, 2010, 06:09 PM
So have all the horses been placed? I PM'd the OP about one of the horses and did not get a response.

Mary in Area 1
Feb. 17, 2010, 07:35 PM
Try emailing Brenda directly at brenda.hess-mcaskill@unh.edu
She replied to me this morning about my mare, but didn't mention the other two listed.

KSevnter
Feb. 18, 2010, 10:20 AM
I am glad you are able to get your horse back and give her a good home. Donating is tough because typically a school can do as it pleases after ownership has changed hands.

My friend donated her lovely hunter (he won the IHF 4 y.o. finals at Capital Challenge) when she went to law school. At 13 he had some soundness issues and she thought donation was a better option than selling him to someone who might drug him to keep him sound so he could keep on showing. She thought she was doing the right thing (and yes, she was already paying board on another retired hunter).

Four years later I moved into a barn 4 hours away from where she donated him and there he was standing in a stall. He was being used as a school horse, and lucky for him he was sold into fantastic hands. The barn owner had the money to keep him sound, shoe him properly etc. But...that was LUCK and it was luck that I randomly moved into that barn because my friend would have never known. Several years later when my friend called to check on him, the new owner said he needed facial surgery (nasal hematoma). She gave him back to my friend who paid for two surgeries and gave him a lifetime home. He is now teaching her little cousin to ride and show at age 19.

Although many schools give you assurances they will contact you first if they need to rehome the horse the reality is that they often can't or don't. It was definitely a wake up call to both of us, I am not saying what the schools do is a bad thing, it is just necessary to be aware of this. Had I not had personal experience I never would have known.