Unwanted Horse Coalition Releases Best Practices Handbook

Washington, DC –  The Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC) has published a handbook entitled Best Practices: How Your Organization Can Help Unwanted Horses.  The handbook is part of the UHC’s continuing effort to get the horse community more involved in solving the problem of unwanted horses.  If the horse community is to succeed in lessening the problem of unwanted horses, more organizations and more events, large and small, regardless of their breed or discipline, must institute activities and programs to deal with their horses after their active lives are over or when their owners are no longer able to care for them.

Many equine organizations, events and service providers have already instituted programs to help ensure that no horse becomes unwanted.  The Best Practices Handbook lists many of these activities and other initiatives that those in the horse industry can undertake.  The handbook includes sections on administration, continuing education, fundraising, support of equine care facilities, matchmaking, direct assistance, breeding control, and euthanasia.  

The Best Practices Handbook outlines various examples of successful programs and activities already in place with other organizations.  There are thousands of associations, events, activities, service providers, commercial suppliers, meetings, trail rides, etc. in the horse community.  Regardless of whether you are involved with a large organization, a small show, a racetrack, or a veterinary clinic, there are ideas in this booklet that can be adopted and put into place.  If each gets involved in some fashion, the industry can go a long way toward solving the problem of excess horses.  

“The more educated our industry becomes in regard to unwanted horses and the more effort that we put into it, the more we can do to help our horses,” said UHC Chairman, Dr. Tom Lenz. “We hope the Best Practices Handbook will give everyone some ideas to pursue.  If each organization gets involved, even with a single activity, the industry can go a long way toward solving this problem.”

The UHC is distributing its Best Practices Handbook to organizations and facilities around the country. The handbook is also available for download on the UHC’s website: www.unwantedhorsecoalition.org.

For more information about the UHC or the Best Practices Handbook please contact Ericka Caslin, UHC Director, at ecaslin@horsecouncil.org or by calling 202-296-4031.

The Unwanted Horse Coalition
The mission of the Unwanted Horse Coalition is to reduce the number of unwanted horses and improve their welfare through education and the efforts of organizations committed to the health, safety and responsible care and disposition of these horses. The UHC grew out of the Unwanted Horse Summit, which was organized by the American Association of Equine Practitioners and held in conjunction with the American Horse Council’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in April 2005. The summit was held to bring key stakeholders together to start a dialogue on the unwanted horse in America. Its purpose was to develop consensus on the most effective way to work together to address the issue. In June 2006, the UHC was folded into the AHC and now operates under its auspices.