Based in Oregon, Harmony New Beginnings Animal Rescue works alongside Animal Control to provide a safe haven for horses and other animals. The husband/wife duo have provided care to over 300 horses in the last 5.5 years. In that time, Harmony has seen everything from mini’s to draft horses (and everything in between).
As a member of the Oregon Animal Control Counsel, Harmony works with local officers as a lifeline for high risk horses. They step in to prevent horses from being placed in feedlots or auctions. Once placed in their care, they create a rehabilitation plan that can include vet care, trainers, and volunteers.
On one occasion, they were called by local officials to rescue 30 farm animals. Around animal 98, Joy called her husband and co-founder, David, to let him know that she was coming home with “a few more animals than expected.” Joy recalls, “We took in 122 goats, sheep, rabbits, chickens, turkeys and ducks.”
Of the many animals rescued that night, only one rooster was lost. Every other animal was rehabilitated and sent to on caring homes. All the pregnant goats and sheep went on to have healthy offspring. Through these successes, Joy and David are driven to continue their tireless efforts.
Other success stories start off on a more heartbreaking note. Joy recalls one rescue where she arrived to find 9 studs (and their companion, a llama) in a field, knee deep in mud, starving. Other horses were already dead in the field. After the horses were gelded, handled, and rehabilitated, the 2 standards and 7 minis were all successfully rehomed.
She notes, affectionately, that one mini in particular was most fond of the llama. He loved to share his food with her. The llama was also able to be successfully adopted into a home with other llamas.
As you can see from these two stories, every rescue is unique and has its own challenges. All too often, horses arrive starving, neglected, and sick. Nursing them back to health can be a long, but rewarding, road.
Success has many definitions at Harmony. “It is hard to say what the greatest successes are,” says Joy. Sometimes the success comes in enabling animals to stay in their original homes through ongoing support and education. Other times it is finding a loving, forever home for a horse that was once deemed dangerous or unfit for riding.
The staff at Harmony take great pains to find those perfect matches. They have an application and interview process. But, they don’t look only at what is on paper. It takes time to get to know the applicant.
Joy and David feel it is important to see how they interact with the horses, consider the home environment, and even vet them online and through social media. They have worked hard to provide a chance at new life. They won't let their work be in vain.
Beyond the challenge of finding the perfect new homes for each animal, the other concern is always funding. They are currently in need of a new trailer. The one they have now is a 1992 open stock trailer. What they need is a tall, open stock, four horse, bumper pull trailer with a tack room. They are also always in need of continuing funding to help maintain the facility and cover the cost of vet care.
Harmony New Beginnings Animal Rescue
9604 Harmony Rd
Sheridan Or 97378
Comment below if you'd like to get involved in the Horse Rescue Trailer Donation and Sharing Program for this organization.