TAKE ACTION for wild horses and burros today!

From Skydog Sanctuary’s plea due to all of the recent roundups.  To read the original story, click here.


I know that a lot of people contact us to ask what they can do to help wild horses stay free and we all feel pretty helpless as we watch roundup after roundup and the thousands of wild horses in holding pens getting bigger never smaller. BUT there is solution, there are things to fight for, because as the BLM has proven for decades, roundups and holding are NOT the answer.

If you watched our film about Goliath, Red Lady and their new baby Bodhi please take the time to read this page and take action to help all the other horses who were not as lucky and still languish in steel pens across the American West or are at risk of being rounded up by the BLM in the near future.

This is one family saved and reunited but on that day 2,000 wild horses were robbed of their freedom and are in BLM holding pens still separated from all they love and know.

Here’s what YOU can do to help today

RIGHT NOW there is a disastrous Cattlemen’s/ASPCA/HSUS plan making its way through congress that calls for the removal of over 100,000 wild horses and burros from the range over the next decade. No wild horse advocate should ever agree to or support a plan to manage wild horses on the range to low AML and we should always keep fighting for those figures to be raised, for there to be less cattle and sheep on public lands and a better deal for our horses and burros who are given such a thin slice of the public lands mixed-use pie.

This plan is called ‘the path forward’ and it will soon be up for Senate approval in the Fiscal Year 2020 Interior spending bill and they are asking for six million dollars to kick it off. That money would also be the money used to pay for spay experiments on our beautiful Warm Springs horses in Burns BLM if that plan gets the green light.

Our wild herds are protected by federal law and should be managed on the range, not warehoused and sterilized at tax-payer expense .

Be their voice and call your senators today.

  • Find your senators’ phone numbers here or dial 202-224-3121 and simply ask for them by name and you will be connected. Please where possible make the call as emails are easy to ignore and delete.

If your Senator is on the list below and is on the appropriations committee it is even more crucial to call !!

Senator Udall (D-New Mexico): (202) 224-6621
Senator Merkley (D-Oregon): (202) 224-3753
Senator Gardner (R-Colorado): (202) 224-5941
Senator Cortez Masto (D-Nevada): (202) 224-3542
Senator Rosen (D-Nevada): (202) 224-6244
Senator Feinstein (D-California): (202) 224-3841
Senator Harris (D-California): (202) 224-3553
Senator Collins (R-Maine): (202) 224-2523
Senator Murkowski (R-Alaska): (202) 224-6665

Here is a clear, simple script to use when you call:

Hi my name is ……………………(say your name) and I live in ………………..(town) Please ask Senator ………………… (say your senator’s name) to OPPOSE funding in the FY20 Interior Appropriations Bill for a Cattlemen’s/ASPCA plan to roundup and warehouse over 100,000 wild horses and burros from public lands over the next 10 years. We need oversight into the BLM as they are failing our wild horses. Thank you for your time.

Please be polite and courteous. We want to represent wild horse lovers as reasonable and rational people so it;’s best to keep emotion out of the call and be professional.

Speak up on Social Media.

We want to target the senators on the Senate Appropriations Committe also – use social media to make your feelings heard to them

  • Twitter: Send your own tweet to the individual Senators on the Appropriations Committee listed below telling them : “Support keeping America’s horses on the range, wild and free. Path Forward will destroy America’s wild horses and burros. Please OPPOSE funding for this proposal in FY20 Approps bill.”

Here are some of Skydog’s alternatives to roundups and holding pens

Plus some ideas to be implemented for the humane care of wild horses managed by the BLM ——> Let’s stop focusing on the problem endlessly and move into the SOLUTIONS:

  • Raise unnaturally low AML’s for wild horses and burros in areas where the range can sustain higher numbers of equines ;

  • Stop Wildlife Services killing natural predators in BLM HMA’s ;

  • Reduce Livestock grazing on lands designated for wild horses. The BLM can reduce conflicts with livestock grazing by offering grazing buyouts or compensations for reduced grazing

  • Restore the millions of acres of lost wild horse rangeland and RETURN wild horses in holding to Herd Management Areas and Herd Areas given to them legally;

  • Design individual plans for each HMA based on science and research.

  • Enlist local volunteers to monitor and document herds so we have accurate figures of horses in the wild. As well as photograph family bands for people to reunite them;

  • Provide shade and shelter for mustangs in short term holding facilities ;

  • Stop helicopter roundups for good – use bait traps only – then use the millions of dollars saved by stopping this brutal practice, on getting the horses they already have adopted into good homes ;

  • Use fertility vaccines in the field to slow population growth and prevent further roundups until all the horses currently in short term holding are adopted;

  • Use social media and the internet to promote adoptions with more information about horses and burros immediately as they come off the range;

  • Open up access to private BLM facilities to give more horses a chance to be adopted out of them;

  • Take better precautions when transporting wild horses to adoption events and exposing them to diseases like strangles.

  • Have better oversight of deaths and injuries in the BLM corrals and better training for wranglers to prevent such injury.

These are all practical and effective methods that could be implemented to help our wild horses stay on the range, get back on the range, be treated better during roundups and in holding……why aren’t any of them being used ?

Whenever I get overwhelmed with sadness I go out and spend time with Goliath’s family and it gives me the strength to keep fighting for all the rest. They heal me. This is a long battle but sometimes we have to stop and rejoice in the small victories, before getting right back to work for these horses. We for one won’t stop until things change. We feel as though we are building an army right now and that is powerful. One day soon we are going to rise up and say ENOUGH.

It is important to remember the devotion and kindness, the love and deep bonds these horses make. Deeper than the ocean and higher than the mountains they live under. This is real love without bounds that deserves to be honored and protected and fought for. Goliath and Red Lady are our inspiration to keep fighting and hope you will all never give up working to protect them.


Who you can Contact

Find your Senators and Representative: https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials

President Trump: https://whitehouse.gov | 202-456-1111

Vice President Pence: https://whitehouse.gov | 202-456-1111

Acting Secretary of Interior David Bernhardt : exsec_exsec@ios.doi.gov | 202-208-3100

Acting Director of BLM, Brian Steed: 202-208-3801

Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue: 202-720-2791

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Lavender is the secret to keeping a horse calm, scientists find – PUT LAVENDER SPRIGS ON TRAILER FLOOR, so they will step on it and be calmed!

I found this article very interesting… and a friend told me that she cuts lavender from her garden, spreads the sprigs on the trailer floor, so that when her horse stomps or steps, he will get a whiff of lavender.   She said it “really works!”.  Her horse is much calmer while trailering – and she cannot believe how simple of a solution!

Click image for original article

Click for original article

Lavender is the secret to keeping a horse calm, scientists find

Lavender is the secret to keeping a horse calm, a new study by scientists have found.

Horses are constantly put through stressful events such as being moved on trailers, bathing, clipping, vet visits, hoof trims, bridling, and saddling.

But now the University of Arizona has discovered that a quick sniff of lavender can lower heart rate and keep the animal calm.

The new study, which was published in the Journal of Equine Veterinary Science found found significant signs of stress reduction in horses that inhaled lavender from a diffuser.

Ann Baldwin, Professor of physiology and psychology, said: “Some horses don’t like to be shod. So, when the farrier comes and starts banging around with their hooves, it would be good for that.

“You don’t need a diffuser, really. Just put a few drops of lavender essential oil on your hand and let your horse sniff.” For the study horses were startled by an air horn and then provided with humidified lavender air.

The horses’ heart rates increased in response to the air horn but returned to normal more quickly in those that inhaled lavender.

Just a sniff of lavender was enough to increase relaxation Credit:  Xun Zou / EyeEm

In a second study, Prof Baldwin enlisted nine dressage horses of varying breeds and ages. Each horse was led to a small paddock and held by a volunteer while a diffuser containing lavender essential oil was held near the horse’s nose.

A monitor tracked heart rates and heart rate variability for 21 minutes total – seven minutes before the introduction of the diffuser, seven minutes with the diffuser in close proximity, and seven minutes after it was removed.

“The heart rate didn’t change; what changed is what’s called the parasympathetic component of heart rate variability,” she said.

“One of the parameters of heart rate variability is RMSSD, which is the relaxation part of the autonomic nervous system. If RMSSD goes up, that indicates the horse is relaxed. We found that when the horses were sniffing the lavender, RMSSD significantly increased compared to baseline.”

The data were supported by the horses‘ observed behavior, which often included relaxation signals such as neck lowering and licking and chewing while the lavender was being inhaled.

The experiment was repeated with water vapor and chamomile, neither of which produced a similar calming effect.

The researchers say lavender may be a better alternative to tranquilizers which have a long term effect.

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