As part of my transition to living on my remote property, I’ve decided to get moving on something important to me. Helping mustangs/wild horses that have been rounded up by BLM find homes!
The following is copied from another of my blogs:
Mustang horse adoption
The North American Mustang, wild horse, is in danger of being protected to death. Ever since the federal government was placed in charge of the “management” of the wild horse herds, and the traditional management by ranchers outlawed, their welfare has been increasingly endangered. Herd populations have been showing the devastating effects from the spread of disease, starvation, and overpopulation.
The major problem for mustangs (wild horses)
BLM, the agency charged with overseeing the mustang, wild horse, herds does the best that any federal bureaucracy can do. Their main form of management is periodic gathers, roundups, of herds to thin a population that doubles every four years.
This practice does thin the herds out in the wild but, it introduces a new problem. What to do with the horses that were rounded up and culled from the wild horse herds?
Early on, the BLM tried using a method of first putting the mustangs, wild horses, up for adoption and if the horse found a home with an adopter, all was good. If the horse did not get adopted for an extended period of time, then it would be offered for sale to the highest bidder. Some horses found homes through this process but many of them were bought by slaughter houses to be used for pet food and other products through the rendering process.
Understandably, those who love our mustangs, wild horses, raised an uproar over the idea that some of them would end up at slaughter. However, most of these kindhearted people are unable to adopt a horse on their own and don’t know what else they can do to help.
The BLM changed the rules so that mustangs, wild horses, would no longer be sold to anyone who might end up killing the horse.
Now, mustangs are kept in long term holding until they can be adopted or they die of old age. Really. It’s much worse for the mustang to be kept penned up and warehoused like that but, that’s what is happening.
Why aren’t people adopting mustangs (wild horses)?
Think about it a bit. Would you want a 1,000 pound wild animal that is absolutely terrified of you at your home? A huge, wild, animal that sees YOU as a deadly enemy and WILL try to defend itself by kicking, striking, biting, every time you got near to it?
You might if you have a few hundred acres of land that you could simply turn the horse out on so it could be relatively free and you can afford to feed it but, if you want a horse you can interact with or even ride, that is NOT an attractive proposition.
What’s the answer?
That is a multifaceted question! There is NO simple “just do this” answer to all the problems facing our mustang, wild horse, herds. However, there are things that can be done to help reduce the problems.
A couple of non-profit groups have bought up large tracts of land to place mustangs onto. These wild horses are carefully managed to ensure that their herds don’t multiply. All male mustangs are gelded. That is a GOOD thing for those places.
Another non-profit organization, the Mustang Heritage Foundation, is focused on getting our mustangs (wild horses) adopted to people who will gentle and train the horses so that they have a happy domesticated life.
Here is where we come in to help our mustangs (wild horses)!
High Desert Heirloom is a “for profit”, private, corporation. We intend to do our part in finding good homes for mustangs (wild horses) through the process of gentling and training them so that people who are looking for a horse for personal use will feel comfortable adopting one of these wonderful animals!
We’ll be joining the Mustang Heritage Foundation’s “Trainer Incentive Program“. The purpose of the program is to provide initial gentling and training for mustangs, wild horses, so that they will be more attractive to potential adopters. Once gentled, the horses are made available for adoption. The fee to adopt these horses is just $150!
Why would anyone want a mustang?
That’s a legitimate question! Mustangs have no “lineage” like breeds such as Arabs, Thoroughbreds, Morgans, etc… They are not “purpose bred” but are bred in nature through natural selection. The mustangs we have now have a large percentage of the original Spanish horses but, through the years, other breeds such as draft breeds have also been introduced. So, many people do not see the, or any, advantage to owning a mustang.
However, mustangs, wild horses, HAVE managed to breed for the best qualities needed to survive on their own in the wilderness! Only the best of stallions manage to gather a herd of mares because the mares simply will not allow a lesser stallion to breed with them.
As a result of this natural selection breeding, mustangs have developed into a super tough breed that can not just live but THRIVE in even the harshest environments.
A mustang, once gentled, becomes one of the most reliable, easy maintenance, high endurance mounts around. They are highly intelligent and will readily take on any task asked of them. Ranchers used to love going out to a wild herd of mustangs and round up horses for ranch work because they knew that once they got that horse trained, it would fearlessly do whatever they asked of it.
Mustangs can also easily be trained for trail riding, back country pack work, dressage, hunter-jumper, reigning, and even rodeo roping events. About the only thing Mustangs won’t be able to excel at is racing.
So many people are looking for good, solid, reliable horses but simply do not know that mustangs posses those qualities. Our goal is to change that. Through our gentling program and our efforts at publicity, we hope to get at least a dozen horses (possibly as many as 48!) per year adopted.
Please consider donating what you can to our effort! All donors who contribute $25 or more will receive exclusive training videos produced by us! There are two ways to donate. Either through my GoFundMe campaign or using the paypal donate option below.
If you’re unable to donate, please spread the word by sharing this blog post!