“I was drawn to horses as if they were magnets. It was in my blood. I must have inherited from my grandfather a genetic proclivity toward the equine species. Perhaps there's a quirk in the DNA that makes horse people different from everyone else, that instantly divides humanity into those who love horses and the others, who simply don't know.”

Allan J. Hamilton, Zen Mind, Zen Horse: The Science and Spirituality of Working with Horse

A friend introduced this quote to me a few years ago, and I have never forgotten it. The term “horse person” is a funny thought to people who aren’t horse types. But to us, it’s the most natural thing in the world. Even though there are plenty of things that divide the horse community, we can’t deny our conditional love for the animal that means so much to us.

I want you to do me a favor and close your eyes and think back to when you were 4 years old.  At that age, a horse was just that, a horse. A beautiful, whimsical, creature that made your eyes light up and your heart pitter patter in excitement. Their smell was exhilarating and gave you big dreams. You didn’t care if the horse was a hunter prospect, or had a killer roll back. All you wanted was to reach out and touch their soft muzzle, while you imagined what it was like to fly away while riding on their back.

To me, once you are a horse lover, you’re always a horse lover. You can’t just give it up. You can try, but it will always be nestled deep down in your soul, the affection trying to escape and make itself known at the least expected moment. When you are driving down a road and see a horse grazing in the field, you can’t help but lean forward and look, that love comes back out and grabs you. Why? Who knows! But we are connected to them, like the quote above says...we are drawn to them like magnets.

Where am I going with all this? Now that I have hopefully reeled you in with nostalgia and all the feels, I want to encourage you, the horse community, to give back. Even just a little. If not for me, do it for your horse, do it for their species, do it for the animal that carried history on their back and gave us our freedom, dreams and happiness.

There are many issues that need to be addressed in the horse world, but today I’m going to concentrate on one: Wild Horses.  

Tomorrow the senate subcommittee will vote on the Fiscal Year 2019 Interior Spending Bill with a recently added Stewart Amendment, allowing sterilization procedures on our wild horses & burros. The Full Committee will vote on Thursday.

The Stewart Amendment states: The secretary of the Interior may hereafter manage any group of wild horses or burros as a non-reproducing or single-sex herd, in whole or in part, including through chemical or surgical sterilization.

"The Cloud Foundation states: The BLM is advocating the use of a procedure called “ovariectomy via colpotomy," which rips the ovaries out of mares and jennies, and has shown to be extremely dangerous even in sterile conditions. The procedure has a high complication rate and causes behavioral changes and loss in bone density, according to expert equine veterinarians.

And Dr. Don Moore, Equine Veterinarian says “In private practice, colopotomy is considered an inferior procedure with likelihood of post-surgical infections and complications (i.e., colic) especially in unsterile conditions. Post-operative care usually lasts several days to often weeks and mares are monitored and in most cases are monitored in box stalls or cross ties, which cannot be accomplished with wild mares.”

If we allow these permanent types of procedures to happen it would threaten their well-being, disturb wild herd behaviors & dynamics and ruin any chance at preservation.

So what what am I asking you to do? I want the horse community to come together as the voice of the wild horse.  I want you as a “horse person” to become aware of the situation. I want you to research, find the truth, and help in YOUR own way.   Something you can do right now, literally right now, is contact your senators and representatives in regards to tomorrow’s voting.


Click to enlarge (from the Cloud Foundation)

Follow this link for guidance on what to say and who to contact:
How to find your Senators:

Tuesday June 12 - 9:30 a.m. EST
Subcommittee Hearing
Watch Live 

Thursday June 14 - 10:30 a.m EST
Full Committee Hearing
Watch Live

I’m reaching out to my fellow horse community because you are brave, passionate and compassionate people. You are willing to get on a 1100 pound animal and say “I trust you” and that takes a special person, a person who is willing to go above and beyond to cherish that bond between horse  and human. So why not harness that energy to help the underdog of horses: The wild horse.

I understand we all have our own issues, horses, and families to look after. I’m not denying that, but if you can take a moment to educate yourself on this subject it would mean the world to us. And just think, if the millions of horse people could come together for our wild horses & burros, they can have a voice bigger than any other and hopefully be a force to be reckoned with.

If you’re reading all the way down here, I want to commend you for making it all the way through this post :) On behalf of the wild horses, thank you!


Fiscal Year 2019 Interior Spending Bill

Amendments to FY2019

Video of Amendments

Report to Congress: Management Options for a Sustainable Wild Horse and Burro Program

This Oregon Sterilization Project

The Cloud Foundation

Moving Forward: A Unified Statement on the Humane, Sustainable, and Cost-Effective On-Range Management of America's Wild Horses and Burros