In December of 2015, three women gathered to discuss the needless pain and suffering they were witnessing among the horses in their community. What started as a conversation between these women ended in a mission, a mission that still serves as the basis for their work today. To turn what some would call “worthless” horses into loved and valued equine partners, to be compassionate champions of neglected and abused horses and to do everything in their power to save these majestic, gentle creatures.
Resthaven tackles their goal through a variety of avenues in addition to rehabilitating neglected and abused horses. But they feel their most important task is placing the horses into safe, loving permanent homes where they can live their years in peace, while bringing love and companionship to those who care for them.
Many of the horses come from situations where they were severely neglected and often starved. The staff at Resthaven is trained in Equine Nutrition and uses their knowledge to provide these horses with the best possible outcome. “Refeeding is an art and must be navigated carefully,” says Judy Grumdahl. “Properly identifying the underlying problems goes a long way to introducing good nutrition in the best manner for each individual horse.”
Refeeding and retraining are done slowly and carefully at Resthaven, taking the time to evaluate any areas where the horses many have trouble and moving at the horses pace to gain and build trust. “Our desire is to make the rehoming process smoother,” say Judy. This requires ensuring that each horse receives the necessary time and attention from their arrival at Resthaven to their moving day. With this in mind, Resthaven limits the amount of horses that they take in based on the resources available. “We do not ever want to do harm by overloading how many we care for,” states Judy.
Resthaven takes in a variety of horses and in February of 2017, they received a whole family in need of care. Kitchi and her daughter, Mansi, BLM mustangs, were rescued from North Dakota where they had been starving, without access to food or water during the brutal winter. In addition, both were pregnant and so exhausted they could barely walk. Resthaven staff focused on weight gain while also deworming, delousing and trimming the hooves of the moms-to-be. Mansi gave birth in April of 2017, with Kitchi following in June. Both foals were born happy, healthy and playful. These three generations are currently living at Resthaven surrounded by love.
Use the information below to see how you can donate to Resthaven, find out how to foster or adopt one of their beautiful horses and help them continue to uphold their mission. Every horse that finds their forever home is an opportunity for another horse to begin its journey to a new life.
Resthaven Horse Rescue
Cannon Falls, Minnesota
If you are interested in loaning or donating your horse trailer to this particular organization, then check out details of our Horse Trailer Donation and Sharing Program here. Then, post your comments below to help out!
Also, learn more about horse rescues in these two articles: