Aren’t ‘Rescue’ Horses Cheap?
There are people that take offense to the fact that Copper Horse Crusade has made saving horses a financially solvent endeavor. However, business and ‘rescue’ are NOT mutually exclusive terms. The term ‘rescue’ seems to lead to the idea that the horses offered by the organization are either inadequate, cheap or worse - FREE. There are organizations rescuing horses that perpetuate this idea by offering low quality, untrained or unsound horses for cheap or “free.” That’s charity (and I’m all for it if the horses can find good placement.)
The problem occurs when people transfer ‘charity priced’ horses to sound, sane, serviceable horses. CHC has a ‘scratch and dent’ section of horses - this one needs to be an only horse, this one has limited vision, this one isn’t sound.... Those horses are ‘charity priced.’ You know what I hear when I refer people wanting lower priced horse to the ‘scratch and dent’ section? CRICKETS. They want that ‘charity priced’ horse that’s still a “cherry.” This happens at the sale too. Could you help me find something that’s ‘very nice and cheap?’ Um, no. If you are looking to perform a charitable deed by saving an older or unsound horse then I will be GLAD to help you evaluate that horse and I will probably even jump on it for you and give you my opinion based on 20 years of experience. If you are looking for that roan, grulla, paint or buckskin stock horse that is sound, sane and serviceable just so you can get it “cheap” bring your bridle and your best judgement.
Saving horses takes a lot of MONEY. No one I know can afford to work for free. I have yet to meet a hay guy that dropped off six tons of hay and didn’t expect to be paid. I’ve never taken my truck to the gas station and filled up on diesel ‘for free.’ Vets and farriers understandably want to be compensated for their services. Having and caring for horses is not “cheap.” Expecting a sound, serviceable, trained ‘rescue’ horse to be cheap or free just because it is a rescue indicates a lack of awareness of the time and resources that have gone into that horse. Serviceable horses with training have value. Anyone that has taken a horse to a trainer knows how pricey a month (or two or three) of training is. However, we recognize that adding training to a horse is the best life insurance policy for them. ‘A broke horse is a placed horse.’
At Copper Horse Crusade our goal is to do the most good for the greatest number of horses. We are at the sale almost every week to make a difference for the ones that we can. Balancing what horses can be pulled and placed with the resources available is always foremost in our decision making process. Good horses and good training are not cheap. The right people will be part of Copper Horse Crusade because we are doing the right thing for the horses, and we are doing it the right way.