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To the Rescue: 3 Strikes, You're Out

Horse “sanctuary” turns out to be horse hell—but rescuers turn the tide

Horse “sanctuary” turns out to be horse hell—but rescuers turn the tide

On the road to recovery, a herd of the rescued mustangs arrives at the The HSUS’s Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch in Texas. CHAD SISNEROS/THE HSUS
Anyone seeking to place her horse with a responsible sanctuary might have been taken in by the professional-looking website, which promoted the 3 Strikes Ranch in Alliance, Neb., as a sanctuary for wild mustangs and surrendered horses. The ranch, according to the site, was a nonprofit habitat for hundreds of mustangs from all over the United States, “a natural environment for wild horses to run on the open prairies of the Sand Hills.”

It’s too bad that the site failed to mention that these open prairies contained nothing for the horses to eat.

Over time, Jason Meduna, the ranch’s owner, had bought scores of wild mustangs from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) , the agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior charged with overseeing the herds of wild horses and burros that still roam public grasslands in the West. According to the BLM’s website, the size of these herds can double about every four years. Because their numbers exceed what the rangelands can support, the BLM says, each year, the department places several thousand of these animals up for adoption, ideally by owners who are prepared to care for them.

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