I read the following story on SkyDog Sanctuary’s FB page today … and knew I had to pass it onto you all. This is a joyous start to your Wednesday!
So we haven’t taken in any horses for a while now and have focused our attention on helping get some horses at risk to other places or to find them homes. BUT it has been a busy couple of days here for sure. A few months ago we agreed to take a wonderful mustang called Jazzy and he arrived on Sunday night and we have just had the best time getting to know him. His story and lots of photos will be coming up next so you can all meet this special boy and you will fall in love with him as much as we have !!!
Yesterday though saw us heading out to the BLM Corrals in Burns to pick up some very precious cargo. One of the biggest mission statements of Skydog has always been to educate and raise awareness about the plight of the mustang and promote the passing of the SAFE Act which is probably the biggest threat to wild horses who are regularly ending up in kill pens and shipping to slaughter across our borders. We love all the horses we have been able to save but one day we will be another full sanctuary with no more space and no ability to take more and we already probably say no to twenty horses for every one we take as we have to be responsible and not take more than our budget and staff can accommodate.
However we can use the awareness we are raising to help people be a part of the solution and one of the biggest things we want to promote and encourage is the adoption of more wild horses out of BLM holdings and into people’s homes. We get so many emails and calls from people who don’t understand how to adopt a mustang or how to go about training it if they adopt a wild one and there are many different answers to that question. SO we are putting together a video diary of the process from beginning to end and will be putting some of it on Facebook over the next few weeks and all of it on our website so people can easily access it and be walked through the process and see for themselves it is fairly simple and also follow an adopted mustang from holding pens to home with a little training too. We have a couple of amazing trainers coming up to Skydog now spring is here to work with some of the wilder horses who need their feet done to see if we can gentle them enough for a trim without the stress of going through a chute.
SO we wanted to introduce you quickly to the mustang (and baby) we chose to follow through the adoption process. We had this idea in mind to do at some point but we saw a photograph taken by Beverly Shaffer who is amazing and runs the South Steens HMA Horses page on Facebook and literally follows all the wild horses and their bands and then goes to the pens to photograph them when they are rounded up and in holding so that people can see horses that may never be show on the internet adoption. This is an incredible feat and also gives people the most detailed information about any of the South Steens horses and their sires and dams and history. If anybody ever adopts one of these horses they have photographs of them in the wild and you can see their lives before they were gathered which is incredible. There are a number of groups who follow different HMA’s and their herds and it is a wonderful resource provided by some amazing dedicated horse advocates. So this photograph was posted last week by our friend Wendell Stockdale and something about it just really touched us all. We put it before the board and we all agreed that this little fragile, delicate and tiny foal deserved to have grass under her feet and a future outside of those pens. So our journey began yesterday when we made the drive to BLM Burns with Jon our ranch manager and wonderful horse trainer Kc Hansen in tow to give two horses back their freedom as best we can. It is always hard to go and see all the horses left behind still sitting in holding, and there were some incredible looking mustangs there, but all we can do is focus on the two we did take yesterday and hope that this video diary we are going to make inspires other people to adopt a mustang and give one a forever home. You would never regret it and it would probably be one of the most rewarding and wonderful experiences with a horse you could ever have. So our journey begins. We haven’t even named them yet it’s been so quick but we hope you will all enjoy getting to know them as much as we will.