“The greatest deterrent
to freedom are men and women of zeal, well-meaning, but
without knowledge or understanding.”
~Justice Louis Brandeis~

"People are so quick to defend their own agendas, but they so often fail to realize we must protect the rights of all if we are to continue to have any rights of our own."

Ranch meaning, in general, any real world dwelling probably not involving full care board. Kind of a rural voice of real horse owners, trainers, traders, auction owners, rodeo contractors, etc.. all of us who have taken a verbal beating and called greedy ass hats. Back at the Ranch contributors, moderators, subjects, and so on, are pro-horse, pro-owner, and pro-slaughter.
Back at the Ranch was formed by a group of like minded horse / livestock owners. It is a place for us to try to educate, a place to vent our frustrations with the current equine industry, a place to share humor and snark, and in general try to open the eyes of the public who seem to be anti-agriculture.We do have a section for comments of course, and if you would like to email us you can do so directly or through the contact us form. We like to hear from our readers. I hope you enjoy reading our blog as much as I enjoy managing it.
Ranch Manager

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Maybe the Rescue Community Should Review the Laws of the States in Which They Operate

Or Good Intentions Don’t Always Give You a Get Out of Jail Free Card.

I ran across this article in the archives of the Sierra Vista Herald while researching something else. I decided since I was kind of behind on what I was actually trying to do I would throw this out for comment.
The article was originally printed in Dec. of 2007. I think it coincides with the “only we have the horses best interest in mind” attitude prevalent in the anti-slaughter/rescue community. Here is the link to the original article along with the reader comments. http://www.svherald.com/articles/2007/12/23/news/doc476df77bc2815810704201.txt Many readers, although they had no idea what type of person this ranch manager was, jumped to make the whole incident his fault. I thought this was a rather interesting position to take from the information given in the article. What do you think?
WHETSTONE — When stray horses are found and there are questions about ownership, there are specific steps that must be followed while attempting to locate an owner.First and foremost, call the Arizona Department of Agriculture Animal Services Division at (800) 294-0305 and report the stray horse.Failure to do so is illegal.In a Dec. 14 arbitration hearing between local rancher Les Shannon and Whetstone resident Ken Wendt, arbitrator Charles Newmark found in favor of Shannon for that reason.
A misunderstanding about who was contacted when a good Samaritan found a horse belonging to Shannon, who is the manager of Sands Ranch, will cost local rescue group Care for the Horses and Wendt the money that was invested in the horse while in their possession.In July 2006, Whetstone resident Terri Moreno found a stray horse and, concerned for its welfare, caught and cared for the animal while attempting to locate an owner. After several months, Moreno contacted Care for the Horses, wishing to turn the horse over to the rescue organization.“We knew that Terri had called different authorities in an attempt to find an owner, so we assumed the state livestock board had been notified,” said Ann Jost, president of Care for the Horses. That assumption is where the organization made its misstep. Believing everything possible had been done to find an owner, Wendt, who is one of the Care for the Horses members, offered to foster the horse. “Ken took over the horse’s care on Feb. 10 (2007) and actually adopted him on March 21,” Jost said.Last July, equine veterinarian Lucinda Earven and her husband, Wayne, were at Wendt’s property to perform dental work on the horse. After learning the animal’s history from Wendt, the Earvens questioned some of the things they were being told. For one thing, Wendt believed the horse had possibly been ridden across the border from Mexico and then released. “That just didn’t add up,” said Wayne Earven, who is a former livestock inspector. “This was a well-bred, well-trained little horse, nothing like the Mexican horses that come across the border.” As the conversation went on, Wayne Earven questioned where exactly the horse had been found.“A lady who lived on property close to Sands Ranch found the horse, so I asked Ken if anyone had bothered to contact Les Shannon to see if he was missing a horse,” Wayne Earven recalled. When Wendt replied he had not, Wayne Earven offered to make the phone call. But Wendt said he would do it. Within an hour, Shannon was at Wendt’s property to claim his horse.An arbitration hearing was scheduled when Care for the Horses sent Shannon a letter requesting “reimbursement for costs we incurred while providing a service for the horse that was done in good faith.” Shannon refused to pay the $1,011 that the organization was requesting, so Wendt wanted the issue settled in an arbitration hearing.“I was without a valuable ranch horse for a full year because they failed to contact the state livestock board when my horse was found,” Shannon told Newmark during the hearing. “As soon as the horse went missing out of our horse pasture, I searched for him for three days. When I was sure he was gone, I notified the state livestock board. I contacted Jim Self out of Willcox and filed a report.” Shannon argued that had Care for the Horses taken the proper steps and contacted state officials, his report would have matched up with the one they filed. His horse would have been returned immediately, before any of the parties incurred costs for keeping the horse.“What they did was illegal,” Shannon flatly stated. “In this country, people used to hang for keeping horses illegally.” Armed with three witnesses to testify on his behalf, Shannon had state livestock officer Brad Cowan and both Wayne and Lucinda Earven at the hearing.While Cowan was careful to say he didn’t believe the organization acted intentionally to deprive Shannon of his property, he did reiterate that state law describes exactly how livestock will be dealt with. “Care for the Horses should have called me,” Cowan said. “I have revisited this issue with Care for the Horses and they know what they need to do. If there are questions about ownership on one side, then they need to contact us. We’ve had to take horses away from Care for the Horses for similar situations in the past.” Cowan said there was “no intent” on Wendt’s part in keeping the horse.“I think he’s a victim of circumstance,” the livestock officer said.In his statement to the arbitrator, Wendt said, “Care for the Horses is not on trial here today. The lady who found the horse advertised that she found him, so we thought every effort had been made to locate the owner.” He then added, “When you feed and shoe someone’s horse for six months, a thank you would have been appropriate, but that still hasn’t come.”At the conclusion of the arbitration, Newmark said he wanted more time to consider the decision.He said, however, that money is not awarded when something is done illegally. “From the witness statements, he (Wendt) did the wrong thing,” Newmark said. “Can he collect money for doing the wrong thing? I don’t think so.”On Thursday, Shannon received Newmark’s decision in the mail. It stated: “The arbitrator has considered the evidence presented by both parties. The plaintiff’s evidence is insufficient to support the claim. The legal process for holding and finding a stray horse was not followed. Plaintiff’s claim is illegal.”Ed Hermes, public information officer for the Arizona Department of Agriculture, said Care for the Horses got a “stern warning” from livestock officer Brad Cowan. “I think this whole thing was a misunderstanding on their part,” he said.

posted by RH1


  1. IF whoever found the horse would of called the vets..or even the cops .. they would of been told to call the brand inspector and would have been given the phone number. So do I think the first person did what they could and call everyone they could to find the owner.. NO... now for Care for the Horses... THEY WERE IN THE WRONG... they should have called the brand inspector before they ever got the horse or at least told the other people to do it.. as it said.. they had done this in the past and had been told..."dont do it again".
    had a friend.. she had a horse show up in her pasture.. she had the horse in her pasture for a few months.. she took the horse home from the pasture and sold it to another friend of mine. When i asked the first friend if she tryed to find the owner she told me that if the owner had wanted to find the horse he could have. So I went to the friend that bought the horse and asked her.. did you make that call to the BI, and she said NOPE and was not going to.
    I walked away and kept my mouth shut but did not talk to them again till all hell broke loose...
    The owner of the horse pastured right next to friend #1 and knew his horse was in the pasture one over... when he went to get his horse it was gone.. he called the BI.. BI called friend#1 and said... he was comming to get the horse.. friend said..she did not have the horse there and needed to go get it but would be there in two days.. she got ahold of friend#2 and that friend said... you will give me twice what i paid to get him back... F#1 did not have that kind of money.. so she gave up two horses for F#2 to keep till bill was paid off....
    now it could of all be a easy fix.... call BI... if you know that the horse might be from next door... call them... and never ever give or sale something away that is not yours.
    ranch manager in montana

  2. Interesting article. It looks like one phone call could have avoided all of this. I agree with the first person who commented. Had the person who found the horse called the police, or a vet, they would have more than likely been directed to call the BI, and all of this would never have happened.
    If Care for the Horses has done this before, maybe someone should have been taking a closer look at their operation.
    This is why rescues get a bad reputation. It's the ones that aren't run well that stand out, unfortunately.