Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Unbridled Joy & Swan Song of Sadness

At 2AM on April 11th , once again, I stood in awe at the wonder of equine life witnessing the instincts of a new foal and the gentle touch of a once ferocious race mare as she welcomed her newborn colt to planet earth. It was a vision of pure joy as our sweet boy stood and nursed gaining strength and coordination with each breath; it was the reward of 11 months of care and sacrafice. His extra long legs required and extra measure of effort with every step; a stride that will serve him well as he turns for home in the Travers --- like his daddy TEN MOST WANTED…..so I dream.

As the dawn of a glorious new day came forth so did the sad news of oppressed thoroughbreds located just 20 minutes from stall in which I had just experienced such joy. Center Brook Farm in Climax, NY had been raided by the State Police and its 177 horses were now in the care and custody of the Columbia-Greene Humane Society.

Like many a viewer, I was horrified by the pictures of very skinny, mangey, muddy horses and simultaneously daunted at knowing the responsibility that would fall upon caretakers in providing for these animals.

Thoroughbreds, more than any other breed, require a lot of feed, it is not unusual for a mare to consume 25 lbs of grain in 24 hours and a full bale of hay -- this alone is $15 per day. In the case of 176 horses it is nearly $2500 per day - $17,500 per week - over $75,000 per month to properly nourish them.

At this point, however this situation came about is irrelevant to its immediate solution, that it is an issue that seriously needs to be addressed in a huge way to see that this scenario does not repeat itself. Right now, the bottom line is these horses, many the relatives of horses that we have all made a living from NEED OUR HELP and they NEED IT FAST. The team at the Columbia-Greene Humane Society (CGHS) is working overtime and single-handedly paying for the food for these horses.

CGHS needs cash donations and the horses is need safe appropriate homes. With all my heart I am asking every reader, fan, partner & friend, every horse lover, and every racing aficionado to please give, every donation makes a difference, in some cases between life and death. Please help the CGHS help the horses -- the same equine that we make a living from and the same equine that bring us joy unmeasured.

Here is the contact info: Call 518-828-6044, extension 101 and speak with Katrina. You can also email cghsuser001@aol.com.

Please include your name and phone number on all telephone and email messages.

This story has been covered nationwide in mainstream media from USA Today to the NY Daily News, Today Show and extensively in equine publications, local papers and a hot topic on blogs and chat boards.

It is a man's sympathy with all creatures that truly makes him a man. Until he extends his circle of compassion to all living things, man himself will not find peace. Albert Schweitzer, 1875-1965, German Born Medical Missionary, Theologian, Musician, and Philosopher

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