Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rescue? Maybe not for me

At the moment I respectfully passed on the rescue/rehoming horse. I met the horse. He was very sweet and walked right up to me and nuzzled me as if he'd known me his whole life. I met his owner and the woman handling the adoption. I couldn't try riding the horse because of all the ice and snow in her paddock but she was willing to send the horse out on trial to see if we were a good match.

Sounds pretty good I know, but after reading through the adoption restrictions and finding out more about this particular arrangement I decided it just wasn't something I was comfortable with. I guess I didn't realize that adoption is a form of leasing a horse. You don't actually own the horse. The person who adopted the horse to you does. You are paying for everything but ultimately, you are under the control of the person who allowed you to adopt the horse.

I have been a responsible horse owner for over 30 years. I am not comfortable with having to run my decisions past someone any time I need to do something with the horse. I started to envision what that might entail and began to realize that it could be a very frustrating arrangement for me;

For example - say I wanted to change boarding barns to one that is closer to my home, and I've known the place for years and I trust the management. Before I can do that, the adoptor must approve of the place. Now, maybe the adoptor of the horse has a poor opinion of that barn, for whatever reason. Technically, she can say "no" and I can't do anything about it, even though it may be a better situation for me.

So I'm back to zero again. I am just so bitter and mistrusting of all of this. This is the 3rd or 4th time I've backed away from something that I initially had optimism about.

My greatest sadness is to be sitting here in July, a year after losing Rugby and still nothing. A year without a horse of my own? I never imagined...

10 comments:

Grey Horse Matters said...

That sounds like a pretty odd adoption deal. I've never adopted a horse only rescued them so I never had to sign a contract. The way this agreement is just doesn't sound fair to the person adopting. Good luck.

Denali's Mom said...

Yikes! That's horrible. That is not the way to adopt out horses. I volunteer at a rescue and I don't think that is the way they do it at all. You adopt it, they do a site check and you get a once a year site check after. Only once was a horse brought back and that was because it was 200 pounds under weight. Good luck on your hunt!

Annette said...

I've never adopted and I don't think it would work for me either with all those restrictions. Some dog rescues are like that - we backed away from one because they wanted to come out and periodically to a house check. I mean, REALLY! I guess I found it insulting even though I know they mean well. I take better care of my animals than I do of myself... and I'm not alone in that. Hang in there. The right horse is waiting for you somewhere out there. It will happen.

Mrs Mom said...

Not *all* of the horse adoptions are like that, but too many are for my tastes.

We're both coming up on that one year mark. Scary isn't it? Hang tough.

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wilsonc said...

Sorry this didn't work out for you! I imagine the previous owner just wanted to be sure her horse went to a good owner...she doesn't know you either. I can certainly understand your reluctance to enter into an agreement like that however. I don't think I would either.

Charlie said...

I realize the answer is probably 'yes' but have you tried other thoroughbred rescues that may have different contracts or talked to a local track? Some can hook you up with a trainer who is looking to retire a slow horse. I've known ALOT of very nice off the track guys.. mine was one :) just a thought

Barbara said...

When I was horse hunting a few years ago and decided to see what was available for adoption I was shocked at some of the restrictions; cannot ever sell the horse, cannot move the horse without permission, cannot EVER move the horse out of state, they can take the horse back at any time. Many of these places, in an effort to protect the horse, go WAY over the top. Sorry, not interested. It turns rescues into collectors because no one can meet all the requirements. Not all rescues are like this, you just need to read the contract before you let yourself get interested in a particular horse.
Sorry this one didn't work out for you, there are rescues that are able to balance relinquishing some control to take a chance on a good home.

Jean said...

I own my own adoptees now. Never did have an issue with the restrictions, as they were mostly meant to assure that the horse was going to be well cared for, but I do understand your concerns.

As noted by other comments, not all adoption groups work the same.

Too bad. That horse sounded like a potential sweetie. But, my friend named one of her horses "Another Streetcar" because there was always another one coming along. Don't give up hope. Your good horse is out there.

Dreaming said...

Oh, too bad. I can sense the frustration, anger and disappointment in your post. You really have been tested over this past year. I know there is a horse out there for you. He will find you.