The Right Horse Initiative – Changing Perceptions & Lives

| January 22, 2019 | 2 Replies

I am always keeping an eye out for people, organizations,  products and services that I believe will inspire, motivate and benefit you, your family, your horses and your community.  

One of the things that is near & dear to my heart is the plight of horses who find themselves abused, neglected or just looking for a soft, forever & safe place to land.   Transitions can be challenging and overwhelming for us as human beings and research shows, many horses find it stressful as well.  

In early 2017, I began searching for a reputable ‘rescue’ to get involved with for myself and for Horse Family.   There are many honest & reputable rescues to choose from.  Unfortunately, there are just as many who are doing the opposite and doing a huge disservice to the horses they work with, and to all of us.   It was an overwhelming process.

And then I stumbled upon a banner for The Right Horse Initiative.

This organization (and it’s President) completely changed my perspective on the entire subject of  ‘unwanted’ horses and ‘rescues’.    The Right Horse Initiative has an impressive website but I really wanted to speak with someone at the organization to find out more.   I sent a request for an interview and the President of The Right Horse, Christy Counts, contacted me and graciously agreed to my interview request.

You know the feeling you get when you speak with someone who is passionate, knowledgeable, authentic and warm about what they’re doing?   Christy is all of that and more.   So is The Right Horse.    I learned so much in talking with her and it will be difficult to summarize and capture it all here, but I’m going to try.  I encourage you to visit their website for more info.

  1. The Right Horse Initiative is just that:   an initiative that combines an impressive list of reputable, like-minded and experienced Adoption & Industry Partners whose focus is to ‘match good horses with good people’ and increase the number of successful adoptions throughout the US.  Possibly, the best way to explain this is to share this from their website:  “The Right Horse Initiative is a collective of equine industry and welfare professionals and advocates working together to improve the lives of horses in transition. Our goal is to massively increase horse adoption in the United States.”
  2. As stated previously, one of  The Right Horses’ goals/missions is to match “Good Horses with Good People”.   Matching the right horse to the right person is KEY in a successful, lifetime partnership.  One of the tools The Right Horse Adoption Partners use (in addition to evaluating horse health, soundness, trainability, etc.)  is their ‘Basic Behaviors Profile‘.  This is a document that can be used by Adopters, Owners and of course Trainers in the assessment process. 
  3. The Right Horse is also working hard to change how we perceive and talk about horses that are ‘transitioning’ to a new life/lifestyle/home/.   When Christy and I were discussing this, she referred me to their Glossary.    How many times have each of us heard the words ‘unwanted’ or ‘rescue’ and immediately thought…”PASS..probably too many problems for me to deal with” ?   Changing how we perceive and discuss these horses can open them and us to a whole new world of possibilities for them & us.   It also adds much needed clarity to a multi-faceted topic.   I believe it will open the doors for future conversations and help more horses & people find each other.  (And nowhere in that Glossary is the word ‘unwanted’ which I was delighted to see).
  4. And finally….the list of Adoption Partners throughout the US is impressive and I’m not talking about their numbers.  Their focus, care and intent to match the right horse with the right person is heartwarming…and it fills me with HOPE.   How many times have many of us purchased horses through the traditional sales market, without even realizing we could be passing up a perfectly adoptable horse?  I think that happens more than any of us realize but The Right Horse Initiative & its Adoption Partners are working hard to change that.   There are some remarkable horses available for adoption and I hope you will check each of them out.   I also hope you will visit each of the Adoption Partners and learn more about what they do!

In the coming months, you will see Horse Family sharing more information on some of the Adoption & Industry partners, as well as some of the horses available for adoption.   We will also be sharing some of their SUCCESS stories (which are heartwarming & inspiring…and don’t we all need more of that!).   I hope to do more interviews and do everything I can to help spread the word about The Right Horse Initiative and the work they do.

I’m also going to ask for your help.    Please visit their website, SHARE their website with your friends & family, volunteer at an adoption partner near you, donate.  ADOPT!  Dig in and do you part to help this initiative continue to grow and thrive…and help them increase their number of successful horse adoptions. 

The Right Horse is something we can ALL get involved with.  We have MANY horses in this nation who are ‘in transition’ and I plan to do all I can to help them by lending my time & support to The Right Horse.

I hope you will consider doing the same.

Until Next Time,

The Right Horse Goals:  (taken from their website with permission)
1:  To support horses in transition by reframing the conversation around equine adoption
2:  To spotlight successful matches across the country and tell those stories
3:  To grow a community of knowledgeable, rational advocates and storytellers who speak out on behalf of The Right Horse and equine adoption
4:  To create a national partner network of equine professionals that create unity for the horse industry
5:  To foster a more compassionate, pragmatic support system for those doing right by people and by horses
6:  To increase equine adoption numbers nationwide

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Category: Best Foot Forward, Featured, Interviews

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  1. Thank you for helping me learn more about the Right Horse Initiative. I like that you mentioned that it helps to match horses with the right people. In general, I can see how this initiative sounds good for protecting the rights of horses.

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