The Golden Carrot Newsletter's Archive
I’m sorry to be putting this first, but after the last two months, I must. Please help if you can - donations to date this year are just over $2,000. I need almost $3,000 per month just to feed these horses. I have been working, and every penny I’ve made is going to their feed... Yesterday I used the last of my available credit to buy 5 days worth of feed. Two sponsors seem to have just disappeared ... extra donations have dried up completely. I have added a Paypal link to the site if you care to donate that way; in addition, I have an account with www.netspend.com. If you go to the site, it will show you ways and locations where you can donate; just let me know if you’re interested in doing that and I’ll give you the account number. Donations made that way are immediately available to me on a debit card I can use at the feed store. Of course, you can always make a credit card donation on the website at the Please Help link; or if you like, my main feed store is Outlaws of Hay & Grain at 951-763-1805 (Russ or Harlan), and perhaps you’d like to make arrangements directly with them to provide TGC a credit. And yes, indeed, I still am grateful for every check that comes in! I’m sorry to ask, as I realize that many people are dealing with after holiday credit card bills, and the hassle and expense of getting the taxes done. But we really need help ......
I’ve been contacted by Beth Archer, a student at the Art Institute of California. Beth wants to do a documentary on The Golden Carrot as her quarterly project! On March 2, she will be here to interview several supporters of TGC, including sponsors of Prophet, Falcon, Jeepers and past sponsors of PC and Daphmar. We’re really hoping for a wonderful ‘info-mercial’ type thing that we can use to display at our booth at the America’s Pet Expo in April. I also intend to offer a copy to some bigger TV news channels in case they might consider using it.
Speaking of the Pet Expo, so far, we only have a couple of people helping Sue and Stacy man our booth at The Pet Expo. Can you help, even for a few hours, to spell them? Again, not much is required. Hand out brochures, answer questions (fact sheet will be provided), and there will be a little horseshoe game for kids to play if they like. If you help, we can get you badges to enter the Pet Expo for free!
On Valentine’s day, the Weather Service really let us down. We got 8" of snow, much to our surprise. As I sat in the house, with a fire in the fireplace at 11AM, watching the snow falling so heavily that I couldn’t see the road from my house, the National Weather Service website was telling me that it was "mostly sunny"! Well, it went on too long and I knew I had to get the horses in. I rushed out the door, and promptly fell on my butt as I hit the snow covered slope too fast. Broke my fall a little with my right arm... Had to bring the horses back to their stalls almost one at a time as the heavy snow obscured vision, and the wind was whipping it into our faces - they wanted to go to their stalls, but it’s instinct with them to turn their butts into that kind of weather ... I fell again, this time hyperextending my left knee .... Finally got some horses going back, but was leading Anna when Dion took exception to the entire situation and ran me down, thumping my left shoulder as he went over me ... I have more aches and pains than Carter has little pills, even these many days later. The snow continued for another 8 or so hours, and took several days to slowly burn off. The mud continued unabated - just when it began to dry up, we had another series of storms up here - no snow but plenty of moisture. Right now, at last, the horses are laid out flat in the paddock enjoying the sun .... March 1 is supposed to be clear and sunny, so does that mean it will go out like a lion? Arrggghhh.... Luckily, the horses have survived pretty well. Most miserable are Joyful, Sara and Falcon, three stalls that for some reason seem to get underground moisture and turn into quagmires. I have put mats in each at least where they eat, but only warm dry weather will provide them with true relief.
I am also turning down a horse every other day or so for placement. The owners are angry that I can’t take a horse, and don’t send the information and photos I could use to try to find them homes. Other rescues have told me they are having the same high incidence of people wanting to dump their animals, and the same rage when they have to say no. They are having as much trouble as I am with feeding the horses they have - feed prices are high, donations are low.
The problem here continues - with rescues having to say no, the horses end up at auction, which means slaughter buyers. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, slaughter continues. The bills have not passed yet, horses are still being shipped to Mexico and Canada to die. Many people, hearing of the difficulties we are having to feed the horses we have, will callously say, good! Get rid of them! But dammit, this is NOT what we do. The horses dying are largely healthy and sound. They CAN be useful, if people would try. And you know that I believe NO ONE should die because we don’t find them "useful" anymore.
We need to (1) educate people on how to own horses and care for them properly, and give Animal Services teeth to enforce neglect/abuse laws; (2) house and feed the horses until that education can generate an interest in owning a horse; and (3) find a way to limit the breeding.
You and I may not be able to solve this problem immediately. But I have a plan. If you can get the word out and find TGC that 40 or better acres of land, I can put together a facility that will help to house and re-train horses for new homes; providing camps/lessons for the public to learn the joy of responsible horse ownership; and perhaps even a small boarding stable or layup facility that would help to support those charitable endeavors!
I also plan to speak with other Southern California rescues to work together, as a group, to approach our legislators for help. They supported, at the insistence of the public, the end of slaughter in California. Now we need them to find some assistance for the rescues who will deal with those saved horses - perhaps land for holding facilities; or perhaps subsidies based on educational programs, adoptions programs and number of horses rescued.
Right now, with financial difficulties eating me alive, my spirits are low. This is a worthy cause and needs to be done by someone, but I’m feeling very alone, as though I’m struggling too hard to make too little difference. I see where this all needs to go, but I need help to get there. I can’t do cleaning and feeding for 30 horses; earn a living for myself AND the horses; try to find homes for the horses calling every day; and still have time to pursue these other avenues of rescue organization and political lobbying too. Can you help? Please?