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Ways To Help Horses

April 15, 2024

April 26 is Help A Horse Day. This is an excellent occasion to show our equine pals some affection! Whether you’re actively involved in their care or simply enjoy observing these gorgeous, intriguing animals from afar, there are numerous ways to raise awareness about the need for horse sanctuaries and rescues, as well as to express support for the courageous people who manage them. A Rapid City, SD veterinarian covers this essential topic below.

What Are Some Ways I Can Help Horses?


If you already have a stable and several hooved buddies, consider fostering a rescue horse. There will be extra expenses, of course, but you may find it very fulfilling. For a list of horses for sale, visit the ASPCA-approved website MyRightHorse.org.


There are plenty of rescued horses in need of sponsors. This approach is an excellent way to help a horse without making a significant financial investment or long-term commitment. 

Just because they took that liberating ride does not imply they are safe yet. Many of the animals are in poor condition when they initially arrive at their refuge. They typically require pedicures and thorough checkups, at the very least. Some require quite a bit of veterinary care to recuperate.


whether you want to adopt or simply support a good cause. Many of these locations are constantly in need of more workers.

Spread Awareness

Of course, everyone may help by supporting and disseminating information about proposed laws to safeguard horses. Every little bit counts!

How Do I Choose Which Rescue to Support?

There are many wonderful possibilities. It might be helpful to visit a rescue before making a contribution, or at least vet them online, to ensure they are genuine. A 501C3 designation is an excellent sign, but it’s not always a must: there are also some excellent small locations, as well as barns that may not usually work as rescues but end up taking in a horse in need. 

The most important thing is to keep an eye out for fakes: hackers will sometimes steal the material of  popular pages and post it themselves.

You can also go here for a list of rescues organized by state.

Why Are Horse Sanctuaries So Vital?

Unfortunately, there have always been horses in bad positions. A man called Henry Burgh intervened in 1866 after witnessing a cart driver hit his horse. Ultimately, this resulted in the first arrest for animal abuse. Burgh went on to form the ASPCA.

Several factors have exacerbated the problem during the past century: Horse meat sales, the fact that many people in the racing industry are more concerned with generating money than with safeguarding horses, financial issues, and the rounding up of wild horses are among the causes at work here.

Should I Adopt A Rescue Horse?

If we could offer you an enthusiastic “yes,” that would be fantastic, but that is not the appropriate response for everyone. You could think about adopting if you have the time and money. It could be the most rewarding thing you’ve ever done! However, it is something to really think about.

Horse care is both time-consuming and expensive. Every day, Silver will need to be fed, have his feet picked, his water bucket scrubbed, and his stall cleaned. Horses must have adequate turnout time as well. Farrier appointments are also essential: we cannot overstate the importance of keeping your horse’s feet clean and healthy. Aside from that, there is the cost of feed, tack, dental care, and so on.

That is not to say that adoption is not a good idea; rather, it is essential to proceed with caution. Also, don’t imagine that you can just pop by once or twice a week for an hour or two. Horses have a unique ability to soak up all of your time, love, and energy, as well as a good chunk of your bank account. 

Another thing to consider? Rescues often need a lot of training and work just to learn to trust people. Handling a frightened, traumatized horse may be too much for a beginner. Silver is quite large and can be dangerous, so this is also something to think over.

If you want to buy a horse but aren’t ready to make the commitment, there are other alternatives to consider. Leasing horses is becoming more common. Different barns and owners may have several options to choose from but in the end, you will be hiring or renting Silver for a specific period of time. One wonderful thing about this choice is that you are not bound to a long-term commitment. There is some shared responsibility, but the owner is ultimately liable.

If money isn’t an issue but you don’t have much time, consider adopting and going to a full-service boarding stable. They will meet Silver’s demands for exercise, cleaning, and grooming. They will frequently assist with coordinating tasks such as hoof trims and veterinarian care. Of course, finding the correct barn is essential here.

What Are Some Examples of Horse Rescues?

There are various forms of horse rescues.

Auction Saves

Although horse slaughter is technically illegal in the United States, there are likely some unofficial enterprises in operation. People who intend to slaughter horses frequently purchase them at auction and then transport them to Canada or Mexico. This is heartbreaking, as not only are the horses usually in bad shape, they are often kept in horrid conditions. Many of them are ill, injured, or underweight, and they are all scared.  Several organizations are intervening to save horses from the kill pens.

Race Horse Helpers

Many rescue agencies accept retired racehorses, and many of their hooved wards are eventually available for adoption. Adopting a rescued thoroughbred has several evident advantages. They are often inexpensive, still young and, of course, incredibly beautiful. Of course, Silver will require training, but this can be enjoyable and gratifying for both of you.

Draft Horse Rescues

Draft horses continue to labor extremely hard in the fields, pulling carts and logs throughout their entire lives. When the years and hard effort catch up to them, they are carelessly discarded. These gentle giants deserve safe, enjoyable retirements.  Helping a rescue that makes that possible can be extremely rewarding.

Wild horses

There are various approaches to wild horse rescue. Some folks have enough land to simply give the horses a safe environment to live and let them go free. Others work to train wild horses and put them up for adoption.

General Rescues

Many relief groups do not have a special niche or concentration and simply aid as many horses as they can. It’s worth noting that even specialized rescues frequently help any horse they can. A draft horse rescue may contain a little donkey or a retired racehorse.


Unfortunately, these adorable, braying horses often get neglected. These sweet equines are incredibly gregarious and develop strong bonds with one another, and they are always full of personality.

International rescue teams operate globally. With so many wars and tragedies going on throughout the world, there are horses that need help all over the globe.

Contact Your Rapid City, SD Equine Veterinarian.

Do you need a good horse vet in the area? Get in contact with our Rapid City, SD pet hospital now!  

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