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Review for Gentle Giants Draft Horse Rescue Society Ltd, Mount Airy, MD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

I have volunteered at Gentle Giants since 2009 and I can attest that their #1 priority is the horses. In recent years we have gotten a lot of “returns,” which is both good and bad–good for the horse because it is guaranteed a home for its entire life, but occasionally bad for its prospects of re-adoption. I can understand if an adopter returns a horse because of circumstances out of his/her control–losing a job in the bad economy, debilitating injury, etc. However, I have less sympathy for those who dump their adopted horses back to us after they have become lame and unrideable, or after their fear of 2000-lb animals/ ignorance of training and sometimes ignorance of the NEED for training (yes, even for that feathered lawn ornament) creates a rude, nervous, or even dangerous 2000-lb monster that is MUCH more difficult to rehome, especially since many of our adopters want easy, comfortable trail horses.

Gentle Giants is dealing with this problem in a way that puts the needs of the horse first. Their motto is: Rescue, Rehab, Retrain, Rehome, and they do put equal focus on each of these areas. They have rehabbed several starvation cases up to healthy weights, including a 30+ year old Belgian mare and ten of the Canterbury Arabians (they will take in non-drafts occasionally). They also invest a substantial amount of time and money in putting training on unbroke horses and ones with behavior problems. Those with severe behavior/fear problems have a home at the rescue for as long as it takes. As for “rehome,” the rescue does its best to make safe and responsible matches of horses and adopters. Green+green= black and blue, and Gentle Giants does their best to assure forever homes.

Would you volunteer for this group again?


For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?


When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


Role:  Volunteer