After all, you are taking them out of horrible environments, some are starved, crippled, old, young, abused, neglected and some simply left to die. And then, some are not. Some are healthy and sound. There is however, no denying that all are victims of bad decisions made by humans. Why should you have to pay for this damaged merchandise? Shouldn’t it be enough that you are willing to take one of them off someone’s else’s hands? Why don’t rescues just give these pathetic creatures away?
Why? Because someone paid their ransom to get them away from the kill buyer. They had to pay an amount higher than the meat buyers would pay. Someone paid their shipping costs to get them to a safe haven. Maybe someone worked with authorities after a horrible situation was made known to them and then worked tirelessly day and night to secure the safety of the animals. Someone then provided a clean dry stall for them to finally rest. Someone dressed their open wounds and brought them their first drink of water that they have had in days. Someone waited until a weary soul trusted them enough to take that bit of hay from the hand that offered it. Someone was kind.
Unfortunately, that same someone has to come up with the funds to care for this broken being or beings. They have to buy hay, grain, supplements, wormers and medicine. They have vet bills frequently in the thousands to only begin to restore health, dental bills to return teeth to a usable commodity, farrier trips to correct neglected hooves and bedding to allow a soft place to lay and cushion their protruding bones.
They have employees to pay, equipment to buy and maintain, endless amounts of fence boards to purchase and install. Gravel, sand and clay to provide stable surfaces for work and leisure.
They have mortgage payments and property taxes. Utility bills that would shock even the wealthy. They have Internet and technology costs. They pay insurance bills in the thousands. They make regular payments to the feed store, fuel supplier, the hay guy, the hardware store and auto shop. They write checks every month for their truck, trailer, lawn mower and tractor payments. They are on a first name basis with the plumber, electrician, septic man, and attorney. Sometimes they barter to make things work. Sometimes, they just go without.
Someone goes without luxuries in life. They pass on that new car, new jeans or those cool new shoes that they would have bought before they knew what was happening to so many unwanted horses. Now that they know, they don’t worry so much about the house that needs painting or the furniture that has seen it’s better day. A day off is not something they think about because there are horses that need care and training more than they need a holiday. Their friends have stopped calling and even family can run short on patience at times. It’s ok, that someone still puts the horses needs before their own.
Someone sits up at night and cares for the weakest and lies in bed and worries when it is suppose to be their time to rest. Someone agonizes over decisions to be made when that special one that they have been caring for isn’t going to make it. And when all of their efforts have failed and last remaining kindness is a peaceful ending, that too costs money.
But for those that make it, someone patiently waits and is ready when at last, their hours, days, weeks and then months of care and work are finally rewarded with a strong and willing partner who is trained and ready to begin the search for a human companion that will be the one so richly deserved.
So when that beautiful horse with the kind eye catches your eye on the Internet or in the rescue paddock, the one who is trusting and trained, just know that it has been a long, time consuming and expensive journey to bring them to this point. While you may have to pay hundreds, even thousands of dollars to bring your new best friend home, someone else wakes up every single day and gives everything they have.