When one of your two remaining horses suddenly died from a heart attack our remaining horse Jack (26 year old) was very distort. As horses are natural herd animals he was very nervous and unhappy, he would stand in the pasture and whinny looking for a companion. We knew we had to act fast however we really weren’t looking to purchase another horse. Our horse crazy daughter had moved onto college and we ourselves no longer rode. However we also had pledged to give him a forever home when we purchased him. So I started looking into adopting. I was immediately impressed by This Old horses website. I called and set up an appointment to meet the staff and visit the site. They were very accommodating and we were able to visit within days. We were givien a tour and met the placement coordinator along with the barn manager and several volunteers. Everyone was so enthusiastic about the role they were playing in making the facility the best it could be. We then proceeded to meet the current residents, the horses. All the horses were well tended and everyone seemed to know each horse on an individual basis giving us insite as to temperament and handling. It made it very easy for us to decide that this was the facility we wanted to adopt from. We knew by adopting we would be making room for them to be able to reach out and give another old horse in need a home. We decided on a gelding and as we live 2 hours north of the barn we were really impressed when we were told they would deliver him to us. Not only are they very knowledgeable about horses but they care about every individual horse they house. We are so proud to play a tiny part in the important work that this facility does, giving homes to older horses.
I started as a volunteer groomer a few years ago at Wishbone Farm in Hastings, their main barn location. They have an excellent online training for volunteers that addresses basic information about horses and safety around the barn. There are two grooming shifts a week that volunteers can sign up for. Depending on skills and comfort level, groomers can either partner with someone with more experience, or be a lead groomer to help others with less experience. Over the course of several months, demonstrations will occur with various specialists including a chiropractor to teach massage, a farrier to discuss the diseases and confirmation of the hoof, and other opportunities to learn. A number of volunteer events including open houses and fundraisers for the nonprofit occurs regularly allowing volunteers to participate in other ways to support them. The staff and volunteers are wonderful to work with, it is a clean and well organized facility. But the best part is the care of the rescued horses. The transformation that occurs in these horses is truly remarkable. I can't recommend them enough.
I have been volunteering with This Old Horse for 5 months now and the work they do is AMAZING. It is such a friendly inviting place and I have met some wonderful people as well as horses. Its hard to take care of so many horses but the staff is always on point and the appreciation they show volunteers is wonderful. You'll want to go back!
The first reason for volunteering at TOH was to be more comfortable around horses. So far I have exceeded my goals and am looking forward to new goals of ground work and eventually riding lessons. I am greatful to be apart of something bigger than myself and I am blessed with a happy heart. I can’t wait til the next time I voulnteer.
I can’t say enough for the ranch hands at this old horse. They are very knowledgeable and are good teachers. They are patient with you as you learn.
I love This Old Horse! I attempted to volunteer out there over four years ago, but met a very special pony they were taking care of on the very first night, fell in love and now own him. His name is Chili. He was starved and abused for the first four years of his life before he was rescued. He was so fearful of all things human. Still, This Old Horse took him in. It took weeks of work before I could even touch him. Now, four years later, he is safe, loved and is slowly building trust with other people. I adore my pony and I never would have met him without all of the good working This Old Horse does for the horse/pony world!
We have been happy with our experience rescuing a horse from This Old Horse. Bonnie is a pleasure to talk to and work with as is Patti, a volunteer for TOH. Both came to check out our property and meet our herd.
We visited for several hours, which helped them to understand what we were looking for, so they could recommend horses currently in their care. We talked about best fits and discussed the history of each candidate.
After we decided on a few horses to visit, Bonnie sent contact information to us so we could set up meet times with the owners. It was helpful to see the horses in their environments, meet the owners, and learn about the horses from those who knew best. Visiting the horses at their homes also gave us an idea of who was in the greatest need of a new home.
We decided on Coffee Machine, who, we discovered after we met her, was pregnant again. She had just foaled the previous August and was due this past August. We told TOH that we wanted to foster Coffee, but couldn't financially take on the care of the colt. They worked with us and paid for the colt's care until they found him a new home.
Now Coffee is at her forever home and will never need to be pregnant again. We love her and continue to build her trust every day. She has even mastered some of the obstacles on our mini obstacle course!
Because of our positive experience with TOH, we have recommended them to several people who have horses they can no longer care for and would certainly recommend them to anyone who wants to give a needy horse a forever home.
This Old Horse cares so much about the horses. I honestly think that the care they provide goes beyond the care many people give to their own horses. The volunteers are some of the most dedicated people you could ask for. They care for these wonderful animals in extreme cold and extreme heat with a smile. The horses are physically cared for down to the vet care and the feed they receive. But they also receive the pats, kisses and love that any animal wants and needs. After 4 years of volunteering I adopted the horse that stole my heart and consider him one of my best friends.
This Old Horse is truly an amazing organization. Thank you for everything you do!!
Love this place! I have a soft place in my heart for at-risk horses, and especially mustangs. So when I found out TOH had taken a number of BLIND mustangs, I knew I had to be a part of it! So happy to be able to spend time with so many special horses and help out a a great cause!!
I started going to This Old Horse to volunteer with my daughter (age 10 at the time) for a few reasons. 1) because I loved horses and I wanted to share that passion with my daughter. 2) because I wanted/needed to teach my daughter what "hard work" really was (which all you farm people out there know what that's all about!); 3) finally for a bonding opportunity with my daughter & I. Every week we volunteered at TOH rain, shine or snow and through the years, it became a part of us. We learned to love the horses & the people. It's like a big family. I definitely recommend it to all parents out there looking for a place to bond with their child and show them some responsibility & hard work. And, if you're looking to care for & love some really great horses who need you. There are plenty of them there!
I came to This Old Horse Inc. as a very skeptical possible adopter. Having worked with rescue organizations for other animal species, i had both positive and fairly negative experiences. My hesitancy was also aggravated by the emotional loss of my horse and the confusion of her remaining buddy, for whom i was now seeking a companion.
I needn't have worried.
This Old Horse, and in particular the adoption leader, were kind, considerate, thorough in their evaluation and assessment, patient, and supportive. They balanced the needs of myself and the potential horses for consideration. They provided two recommendations, facilitated a potential adoption process, and the final adoption.
I am now the proud caregiver of two new additions to the family who were the perfect pair to join our farm. I recommend This Old Horse without reservation, am now an ongoing financial contributor in addition to an adopter, and look forward to a long relationship with the organization.
They have, quite simply, turned my heartbreak into a joy. I am thankful every day that I worked with them.
The people at This Old Horse are dedicated to finding the perfect forever home for every horse. I’m fostering two sweet geldings who are enabling me to pass on my love for horses to my grandchildren.
This Old Horse is an absolutely fantastic equine sanctuary, retirement home, and play place for equines that need some extra TLC. And what a lot of TLC these folks have to give! Their specialty is giving a home to equines that even other 'rescues' won't take- horses like the very old, blind, aged beyond being 'useful' according to most people, elderly stallions, untouchable minis, and on and on. Whatever the issue is- no matter how utterly impossible a challenge an equine's situation is, This Old Horse can sort it out, make it work to the benefit of the horse, and turn the whole issue into the happiest affair you can imagine. Nancy Turner and her compatriots are a barrel of fun, terribly creative, and they simply refuse the notion that there is anything on Earth that is impossible when it comes to helping horses that just don't fit in anywhere else. If anyone deserves a heap o' donations, it's this wonderful organization.
When I was running The Hallelujah Horses mission- a massive effort to find homes for 907 wild, neglected, starving horses from a failing sanctuary, my organization was able to find homes for all the horses in groups of two or more; all EXCEPT a group of 20 elderly wild stallions, about seven of whom were blind, several had one eye, and others had severely failing vision. We were determined to find the 'Hallelujah Stallions' a home, but who in the world would be willing to take on a single group of 20 WILD STALLIONS?! This Old Horse would. That's who. They found a wonderful couple who was willing to donate a big chunk of their land for a special sanctuary to be built on, TOH had a safe, strong fence built, shelters erected, and as soon as it was all ready, off the stallions went to their new home! Those guys are as happy as clams, they are treated like royalty, and are thriving with their buddies. They also adopted several other groups of Hallelujah horses that had special needs and are giving them the best life they could ever dream of. THAT is what kind of organization This Old Horse is! They are simply the best of the best at what they do!
Photos: Some of the Hallelujah Horses enjoying life at This Old Horse's Hallelujah Stallions Sanctuary in MN.