Nonprofit Horse Rescue Group Challenges Inhumane Experimental Surgery

HINES, Ore., July 26, 2016 – Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER), a national nonprofit working to end the abuse and neglect of horses through rescue, advocacy and education, announced today it is suing the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management to stop the BLM’s experimental sterilization of wild mares in Oregon. The lawsuit was filed late yesterday in federal court in Washington D.C.

FRER’s suit contends the BLM’s intention to conduct surgical experiments on 225 wild horses, many in various stages of pregnancy, and potentially thousands more horses over time, causes harm and suffering in violation of federal law.

The sterilizations on wild mares proposed by the BLM, to be carried out in collaboration with Oregon State University, include three untested, dangerous procedures:

  • Slicing open the mare’s vagina while sedated, but awake and standing, and blindly pulling out her ovaries – a risky and controversial surgical procedure even for tame mares under the best of conditions, let alone captive wild horses in a holding facility
  • Burning and then cutting the sedated, but conscious horses’ fallopian tubes, a procedure that is surgically untested on horses
  • Using a laser, inserted through the vagina, to scar and seal the ovaries – another surgery that has never been studied in horses

“It is unjustifiable for the BLM to conduct such barbaric sterilization experiments with a host of known risks, including death, on captive wild horses,” said Hilary Wood, President of FRER. “Performing unproven surgeries in a holding pen, let alone on the open range, is contrary to the BLM’s congressional mandate to care for wild horses, especially when responsible alternatives like the PZP contraceptive vaccine already exist to maintain population levels and ensure herd viability.”

Earlier this year, FRER filed formal comments opposing the “research” that will be done on conscious animals in long-term holding. These comments – and comments submitted by more than 20,000 members of the public – were disregarded, prompting FRER to file its suit.

“These sterilization procedures are not documented, practiced, or analyzed in non-surgical settings; they are overly invasive, and they are unlikely to have applicability for mares on public lands,” said Laureen Bartfield, DVM, an expert in population control of wild horses and the social structure of herds. “Two of the three procedures have virtually never been performed on horses, and the unvisualized removal of the ovaries, while documented in the literature, is disfavored by reputable veterinarians. The BLM’s plan is not just clinically ill advised, it constitutes animal cruelty on a large scale.”

The plans for eventual widespread sterilization of horses on the range will also run up an estimated cost to the taxpayers in the millions – and the first of the funds could be handed to OSU in the form of a BLM grant. This first group of mares to go under the knife are in BLM custody in the Hines Corral in Eastern Oregon.

FRER’s lawsuit says the experimental sterilizations represent a conflict of interest, and are not in the best interests of wild horses, but rather in the BLM’s own best interest by reducing their management load without considering their mandate to properly manage the horses.

This is not the first time the BLM has pursued surgical sterilization for wild horses. In 2011, a federal court found the bureau’s plans to castrate wild horses captured in Wyoming was of an “extreme and irreversible nature.” In 2012, the BLM was again forced to defend similar plans in federal court, and abandoned its efforts to castrate Nevada’s wild horses.

About Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER)

Front Range Equine Rescue is a 501c3 Colorado nonprofit working to end abuse and neglect of wild and domestic horses through rescue and education. Since 1997, FRER has assisted thousands of horses through its programs, and many more with expanded facilities on the East Coast. Many of FRER’s rescued horses are obtained directly from auctions and kill lots, and would have shipped to slaughter without FRER’s intervention. Through its legal advocacy, FRER has effectively prevented horses from being slaughtered for human food in the U.S., and is actively involved in preventing unnecessary and unlawful removal of wild horses and burros from public lands. For more information see www.frontrangeequinerescue.org.

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ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative has granted over $2 million to protect former racehorses from
being sent to slaughter

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced that it has granted $200,000 to 18 equine rescue groups across the country to assist their efforts to rescue and rehabilitate retired racehorses. The grants were awarded as part of the ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative, a major grants program that launched in 2010 and provides funding for equine rescues and sanctuaries that protect retired racers by offering alternatives to slaughter. Now in its seventh year, the program has awarded over $2 million to retired racers to prepare them for life after their racing careers come to an end.

“The ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative allows us to provide much-needed grant funding to the many equine rescue groups around the country who provide critical resources to former racehorses, offering them medical rehabilitation, re-training or sanctuary to prevent them from being sent to slaughter,” said Jacque Schultz, senior director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “Their racing careers may have ended, but these retirees still have much to offer as they transition into new and varied careers – a process that requires significant time and resources.”

Selected recipients include a wide range of equine rescues from 12 states, who will each be awarded a grant ranging from $5,000–$24,000, to help the groups increase their capacity for rescuing more horses. The organizations joining the list of rescues and sanctuaries as part of the ASPCA Rescuing Racers Initiative for 2016 are:

  • After the Homestretch, Ariz.
  • CANTER/National
  • CANTER, Mich.
  • CANTER, OH
  • The Exceller Fund Inc., Ky.
  • Foxie G Foundation Inc., Md.
  • Friends of Ferdinand, Ind.
  • Kentucky Equine Humane Center Inc., Ky.
  • Makers Mark Secretariat Center, Ky.
  • MidAtlantic Horse Rescue, Inc., Md.
  • Neigh Savers Foundation Inc., Calif.
  • New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program, Ky. and OH
  • Old Friends Inc., Ky.
  • Racer Placers, Wis.
  • ReRun Inc., N.Y.
  • Safe Harbor Equine and Livestock Sanctuary, Tenn.
  • Standardbred Retirement Foundation, N.J.
  • Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, Ky.

In 2015, the ASPCA awarded over $1 million in grants to support 124 equine rescues and sanctuaries across the country. The grant money supported several areas of equine welfare including large-scale rehabilitation, emergency relief grants, safety net programs, and ASPCA Help a Horse Day, a nationwide grants competition of equine rescues and sanctuaries that is designed to raise awareness about the year-round lifesaving work they do to care for local at-risk horses who’ve been abused, neglected or find themselves homeless.

Horses have been central to the ASPCA mission since the organization’s founding 150 years ago. The ASPCA’s efforts to further equine protection include supporting equine welfare through legislation, public advocacy, professional development, horse rescue and targeted grants. Most recently the ASPCA launched a broad “Adopt a Horse” public service campaign featuring “2 Broke Girls” actress and horse advocate Beth Behrs and her rescue horse Belle, to encourage potential horse owners to make adoption their first option. The campaign highlights the many benefits of adopting a horse from one of the nation’s hundreds of equine rescue groups. It also aims to connect the many horses in need of permanent homes with the 2.3 million Americans who, according to a recent survey, say they have adequate space, resources, and strong interest in adopting a horse.

To learn more about the ASPCA, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Eleven equine rescues receive grants in recognition of their efforts to protect horses

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today revealed the eleven winners of the third annual ASPCA Help a Horse Day contest, a nationwide grant competition for equine rescues and sanctuaries to raise awareness about the year-round work they do to save and care for at-risk horses. The grand prize winner received a $25,000 grant, while ten runners-up were awarded grants of $10,000 or $5,000 to support their ongoing efforts to protect horses. The winning groups include:

$25,000 Grand Prize Winner:

  • Equine Voices Rescue & Sanctuary, Green Valley, Ariz.

$10,000 Prize Winners:

  • All About Equine Animal Rescue, El Dorado Hills, Calif.
  • Begin Again Horse Rescue, Honeoye, N.Y.
  • California Coastal Horse Rescue, Oak View, Calif.
  • Hidden Acres Thoroughbred Rescue, Cocoa, Fla.
  • The Pegasus Project, Ben Wheeler, TX

$5,000 Prize Winners:

  • Blue Rose Ranch, Springfield, Colo.
  • Freedom Hill Horse Rescue, Owings, Md.
  • HiCaliber Horse Rescue, Valley Center, Calif.
  • Horse Protection League, Arvada, Colo.
  • Horses of Tir Na Nog, San Diego, Calif.

“In honor of the ASPCA’s 150th anniversary this year, we expanded our Help a Horse Day celebration to recognize even more groups for their incredible work engaging their communities and spreading the word about how to protect horses,” said Jacque Schultz, senior director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “We were overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response and thrilled to welcome twice as many participants to the contest this year. There are so many deserving equine rescues and sanctuaries, and we are pleased to help them provide vital services to at-risk horses around the country.”

Adding to the excitement surrounding this year’s contest was “2 Broke Girls” actress and horse advocate Beth Behrs, who teamed up with the ASPCA to help spread the word about the everyday heroes who work tirelessly to care for and rehabilitate horses like her own adopted horse, Belle.

More than 33,000 community members came out to support the 187 groups holding celebrations across the country in April, and winners were selected based on the creativity of their events, as well as their success engaging their local communities. This year’s events included movie screenings, book signings, family fairs and spring festivals, and even a mini horse wedding. The groups reported record fundraising efforts through these events, with several raising $50,000 or more to assist their rescue work.

Horses have been central to the ASPCA mission since the organization’s founding 150 years ago. The ASPCA’s efforts to further equine protection include supporting equine welfare through legislation, public advocacy, professional development, horse rescue, and targeted grants. Most recently the ASPCA launched a broad “Adopt a Horse” public service campaign featuring Beth Behrs and her rescue horse Belle, to encourage potential horse owners to pledge to make adoption their first option. The campaign highlights the many benefits of adopting a horse from one of the nation’s hundreds of equine rescue groups. It also aims to connect the many horses in need of permanent homes with the 2.3 million Americans who, according to a recent survey, say they have adequate space, resources, and strong interest in adopting a horse.

On April 10, the ASPCA launched a months-long celebration of its 150th anniversary with ASPCA 150: Come To Their Rescue – a national campaign honoring the ASPCA’s 150 years of animal rescue by inspiring public acts of compassion that will help save and protect dogs, cats, horses and farm animals from cruelty. For 150 days, the ASPCA is encouraging animal lovers to visit ASPCA.org/150days and pledge at least 15 minutes of their time to helping animals in need, toward an ultimate goal of 150,000 acts of compassion through September 7, 2016.

For more information about ASPCA Help a Horse Day, please visit http://www.aspca.org/helpahorse.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Appropriations bill will prevent U.S. horse slaughter operations in FY2017 by eliminating funding for horse slaughter inspections

WASHINGTON—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today commends the members of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee for approving an anti-horse slaughter amendment to its fiscal year 2017 Agriculture Appropriations bill. The Udall-Kirk Amendment, introduced by Sens. Tom Udall (D-NM) and Mark Kirk (R-IL), and cosponsored by Sens. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Jack Reed (D-RI) was passed in the full committee by a bipartisan vote and will continue a ban on the gruesome horse slaughter industry on U.S. soil by preventing the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) from using taxpayer dollars to conduct horse slaughter inspections, which is a requirement for slaughterhouses to operate. An identical amendment was approved by the House Appropriations Committee in April.

“Horse slaughter is inherently cruel, environmentally and economically devastating to local communities and unsafe for foreign consumers,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations. “Eighty percent of American voters oppose the slaughter of horses for human consumption and now that both the House and Senate have approved this language we are one step closer to prohibiting the irresponsible and wasteful use of taxpayer dollars to fund this brutal practice. We are grateful to Senators Udall and Kirk for introducing this amendment to ensure this grisly industry does not establish itself in the U.S.”

"New Mexicans regularly write and call asking me to ensure we never allow horse slaughter in the United States, and this amendment will ensure no federal dollars are used to allow the practice to exist," Udall said. "Horses are a beautiful symbol of Western independence. Most Americans find the idea of slaughtering horses for human consumption repulsive, and they have no tolerance for attempts to open horse slaughtering plants. This amendment is a strong step forward, and I will keep fighting to prohibit horse slaughter in the United States." 

"Illinois banned horse slaughter in 2007 and I support the end of the practice in the United States,” said Sen. Kirk. “Americans have a long-established history with horses and overwhelmingly reject their slaughter for profit."

A recent Edge Research poll commissioned by the ASPCA shows that 2.3 million Americans have adequate space, resources, and strong interest in adopting horses. This new data suggests that there are more than enough homes available for the 125,000 American horses shipped to Canada and Mexico last year to be slaughtered for human consumption. The majority of these horses – 92 percent, according to the USDA – are young, healthy animals who could otherwise go on to lead productive lives with loving owners.

Whether slaughter occurs in the U.S. or abroad, the methods used to slaughter horses rarely result in quick, painless deaths, as horses are difficult to stun and often remain conscious during their butchering and dismemberment. In addition, meat from American horses is unsafe for human consumption since horses are not raised as food animals. They are routinely given medications and other substances that are toxic to humans and are expressly forbidden by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in animals intended for human consumption.

While the Udall-Kirk Amendment prevents slaughterhouses from opening on U.S. soil for another year, it is not a permanent solution and cannot prohibit the current transport of U.S. horses from being trucked to slaughterhouses in Canada and Mexico. To address this issue, Sens. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Susan Collins (R-ME) introduced the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act (S. 1214 /H.R. 1942)—legislation that would permanently ban horse slaughter in the U.S., end the current export of American horses for slaughter abroad, and protect the public from consuming toxic horse meat.

To learn more about the ASPCA’s efforts to ensure animals have greater protection under the law, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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- Colorado rancher sold over 1,700 wild horses for slaughter in Mexico
- Government agency BLM spent $140,000 of taxpayer money to transport horses
- 10,275 people so far have called on the Attorney General to deliver justiceConejos County, Colorado

(April 27, 2016) Over 10,000 people have joined In Defense of Animals to call on the US Attorney General to deal justice to a Colorado rancher and government agency involved in sending over 1,700 wild horses to their brutal deaths in Mexico.Rancher and livestock hauler Tom Davis purchased 1,794 wild horses through the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Wild Horse and Burro Program, then willingly sold them to be slaughtered in Mexico. The actions were conducted over a period of four years, and contravene a Congressional ban that protects wild horses and Bureau policy.“The overwhelming response to our open letter shows that the public will not tolerate BLM’s attempts to wash its hands clean of the blood of thousands of wild horses,” said Dr Marilyn Kroplick, President of In Defense of Animals. “It is unacceptable that these majestic horses have been ruthlessly exploited by a greedy rancher using taxpayers’ money. We call on the United States Department of Justice to prosecute Davis and show that horse killers will not be tolerated.”An investigation conducted by the Department of the Interior determined that government agency BLM spent more than $140,000 of taxpayer money transporting horses to Davis between 2008 and 2012. During the investigation, Davis opined that “BLM had to know that the horses would end up at a slaughterhouse”. The report reveals that Davis bought horses for just $10 and sold them for $100, and made tens of thousands of dollars in profit.Despite the damning findings, both the US Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado and the State of Colorado Conejos County District Attorney's Office have declined civil and criminal prosecution and the BLM has stated that it will take no further action specific to Mr Davis.“Wild horses are protected by law, and the government agency BLM is committing criminal acts by taking them,” said wild horse advocate and Meet America TV Producer Annie Griffin. “With my own eyes, I have seen the terror and suffering of our wild horses, a symbol of our American freedom, as they are rounded up and sent to slaughter. Attorney General Loretta Lynch must pass justice on the BLM thugs and force them to return taxpayer money spent sending horses to a known horse-slaughter seller.”The horse killing open letter to the Department of Justice can be read and signed here http://bit.ly/horsejustice 

In Defense of Animals is an international animal protection organization located in San Rafael, Calif. dedicated to protecting animals’ rights, welfare, and habitats through education, outreach, and our hands-on rescue facilities in India, Africa, and rural Mississippi.



ASPCA #HelpAHorse contest will award $100,000 in grant prizes to equine organizations across the country

New research shows at least 2.3 million Americans have a strong interest in adopting a horse

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced the participants in its third annual ASPCA Help a Horse Day grants contest. The nationwide competition of equine rescues and sanctuaries is designed to raise awareness about the year-round lifesaving work they do to care for local at-risk horses who’ve been abused, neglected or find themselves homeless. In honor of the ASPCA’s 150th Anniversary celebration this month, the ASPCA has teamed up with “2 Broke Girls” actress and horse advocate Beth Behrs to spread the word about the contest, which has been expanded to include a total of $100,000 in grant prizes. This year, 191 groups will be hosting events across 42 states during the weekend of April 22-24 as they compete to win a grand prize of $25,000.

“The ASPCA Help a Horse Day contest has grown exponentially over the past few years, and we are excited to celebrate our 150th anniversary by providing even more grants to the dedicated equine rescues and sanctuaries that step in to care for abused or neglected horses and give them a much-deserved new lease on life,” said Jacque Schultz, senior director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “We are proud to welcome Beth Behrs to the contest this year and we applaud her efforts to raise awareness about wonderful horses available for adoption around the country.”

“I recently adopted my horse, Belle, from a California sanctuary, where I was able to see firsthand the tireless efforts that go into rehabilitating and caring for at-risk horses,” said Behrs. “It’s inspiring to see the creative events being planned around the country in celebration of the ASPCA Help A Horse Day contest, and I am honored to lend my voice to equine protection and to help recognize these everyday heroes for their life-saving work.”

Participating rescue groups will be judged on the creativity of their events, as well as their ability to engage their local communities to assist their efforts to protect horses. Activities include open houses, education and volunteer programs, birthday parties, spring festivals, scavenger hunts and other fun-filled events. ASPCA Help a Horse Day is celebrated annually on April 26 – a date chosen for its significance to the ASPCA’s long history of horse protection. In 1866, ASPCA founder Henry Bergh stopped a cart driver from beating his horse, resulting in the first successful arrest for horse mistreatment on April 26 of that year. The protection of horses has been a core part of the ASPCA mission ever since, which includes supporting equine welfare legislation, advocacy, rescue and targeted grants.

Coinciding with Help a Horse Day events, the ASPCA has unveiled the results of a recent nationwide survey showing that at least 2.3 million Americans have adequate space, resources, and a strong interest in adopting a horse. This new data suggests that there are more than enough homes available for the approximately 125,000 American horses shipped to Canada and Mexico last year to be slaughtered for human consumption.

“For anyone considering adopting a horse or donkey, there’s no better time than an ASPCA Help a Horse Day event to see what the nation’s equine rescues have to offer,” added Schultz. “The strong public sentiment against horse slaughter, combined with the significant lack of awareness that this is a problem horses face, underscores how community events like ASPCA Help A Horse Day are critical to pairing horses in need with the homes that are available.”

Last year, the ASPCA awarded over $1 million in grants to support 124 equine rescues and sanctuaries across the country. The grant money supported several areas of equine welfare including large-scale rehabilitation, emergency relief grants, safety net programs, and the Rescuing Racers Initiative, which aids in the rescue and rehabilitation of retired racehorses to save them from slaughter.

For more information about ASPCA Help a Horse Day or to see if there is an event near you, please visit www.aspca.org/helpahorse.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Boulder Crest Retreat, a free therapeutic retreat for combat veterans, includes equine therapy in their program

BLUEMONT, Virginia – (April 4, 2016) –Winston Churchill once noted, “The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man.” This idea – that horses have the power to lift our spirits, make us feel loved, and create a sense of internal peace – is well known to many people across this country. What many people may not realize is that horses can play a critical role in empowering veterans to make the journey all the way home from war, and begin walking a new path – full of passion, purpose and service – here at home. There are remarkable programs all across the country leveraging horses healing abilities, and a range of other animals, to support our nation’s combat veterans.

“Horse Inspired Growth and Healing (HIGH) is an important part of every program we run in support of combat veterans and their families,” explains Ken Falke, chairman and founder of Boulder Crest Retreat. “Within just a few minutes of being around the horses, and working with our team, we see a tremendous difference. Faces light up, burdens wash away, and smiles reappear. There is something profound and deeply special about the manner in which horses work with those who are struggling – they have an internal recognition of exactly what each person needs.”

There have been numerous studies supporting the idea that equine therapy helps those who are struggling, and a recent study published in Biology Letters demonstrated that horses have the ability to recognize human emotions and facial expressions.

Recently, in the January 2016 issue of the journal Social Work, researchers reported that nearly half of all combat veterans suffer from serious psychological disorders and reintegration issues. They report that equine-facilitated mental health programs have demonstrated promise in treating veterans with (PTSD) depressive and anxiety disorders, as well as reintegration issues.

At Boulder Crest Retreat, combat veterans engage in an equine therapy program in addition to the other progressive therapeutic activities that make up the program. The retreat offers combat veterans and their families the opportunity to stay for a week at the 37-acre retreat, where they can engage in a full treatment plan. The equine therapy program is facilitated by Suzi Landolphi, who has a master’s degree in clinical and community psychology and is a licensed marriage and family therapist. She is also the author of two books, and has created a program offering Horse Inspired Growth and Healing (HIGH) and Horse Inspired Psychotherapy (HIP), which utilizes horses to:

  • Encourage. Horse therapy encourages veterans and their family members to feel safe enough to reconnect their mind and their heart, and express themselves.

  • Connect. It allows veterans and their family members to better connect with themselves and their loved ones.

  • Renew. Help veterans move through their fears, let go of traumatic experiences, begin to feel a sense of calm and peace, and live in the present.

“Because most of us have experienced hurt from humans, whether in combat or at home, we shy away from expressing how we are feeling to fellow humans,” explains Landolphi. “Horses walk right though our emotional defenses and encourage us to be open hearted and open minded to a more authentic way of living, first, with ourselves, and then with the members of our human herd.”

Boulder Crest Retreat utilizes a range of age-old and evidence-based modalities designed to offer greater clarity, increase connection and facilitate growth and healing. In addition to equine therapy, the Retreat offers art, music, meditation, yoga, kayaking, hiking, horticultural, nutrition, and culinary programs. Delivered by a combination of trained combat veteran mentors and world-class therapists, these tools enable combat veterans and their families to transform struggle into strength, and begin living a great life here at home.

The Retreat welcomes wounded active-duty, reserve and National Guard personnel, veterans, their family members and caregivers, and Gold Star Families. Boulder Crest Retreat is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that is funded entirely by private donations by individuals and organizations from around the country. For more information about the retreat, please go to www.bouldercrestretreat.org. View a video about the Boulder Crest Retreat here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KztgmScOQLw.

ABOUT BOULDER CREST RETREAT

Boulder Crest Retreat for Military and Veteran Wellness is a rural sanctuary that provides free accommodations, recreational and therapeutic activities and programs to help our nation’s military and veteran personnel and their families recover and reconnect during their long journey of healing from physical and invisible wounds of war. The 37-acre retreat is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Bluemont, Virginia, just 50 miles west of Washington, D.C. The Retreat is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and is entirely funded through private donations from individuals, foundations and corporations. For more information about Boulder Crest Retreat, please visit www.bouldercrestretreat.org.

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Nonprofit Horse Rescue Group Leads the Fight Nationwide to Prevent Horse Slaughter and Protect the Public

SANTA FE, NM, February 4, 2016 - Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER), a national nonprofit working to end the abuse and neglect of horses through rescue and education, in collaboration with the Attorney General of New Mexico, has obtained a court order that permanently ends any possibility of horse slaughter for human consumption at Valley Meat slaughterhouse in Roswell, New Mexico.

The court's order, issued by Judge Francis J. Mathew in Santa Fe today, is the culmination of three years of legal efforts by FRER, local residents, and the state to prevent horse slaughter in New Mexico.

The order permanently banning Valley Meat and any associated company or individual from slaughtering horses originated in a 2013 lawsuit initiated by the Attorney General's Office, joined by FRER and four residents of Roswell whose health, safety, and enjoyment were threatened by Valley Meat's operations. This suit successfully obtained an injunction against Valley Meat's horse slaughter operations.

FRER was the first group to discover that Valley Meat was applying to slaughter American horses, and FRER's investigations exposed the company's decades-long record of violating environmental and animal welfare requirements. Over the course of two decades, Valley Meat has accumulated more than 5000 violations of state laws protecting the environment, groundwater, rivers, and other waterways.

Among the most egregious of its misconduct, Valley Meat operated a cow slaughterhouse for nearly three years without any state approval to discharge water at all, thereby avoiding any oversight that might have helped monitor any damage being done. For years, Valley Meat illegally dumped and buried cow carcasses and pieces of dead animals, despite repeated requests from state regulators to cease and desist and clean up its mess.

"We have been working for years through the courts to stop the illegal, inhumane, and toxic practice of horse slaughter," said Hilary Wood, President of FRER. "This is a critical precedent in that effort because prospective horse slaughter operations will not be accepted by this state, and, with the support of other like-minded people, we will fight to ensure that no other American state allows the slaughter of horses for human consumption."

Facts:
• More than 135,000 American horses are exported for slaughter each year.
• The USDA has documented the abuse and misery horses suffered at U.S. slaughterhouses.
• Virtually all horses used for meat spend most of their lives as work, competition, or sport horses, companion animals, or wild horses, and are not raised or regulated as food animals.
• During their lives, owned horses are subject to a constant regimen of drugs and other substances which are either illegal for food animals, or are potentially dangerous to the health of consumers.

For over a decade, FRER has worked to prevent the slaughter of American horses, and intends to continue its efforts until the practice is permanently outlawed.

About Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER)
Front Range Equine Rescue is a 501c3 nonprofit working to end the abuse and neglect of horses through rescue and education. Since 1997, FRER has assisted thousands of horses through its rescue and educational programs. Many of FRER's rescued horses are obtained directly from livestock auctions and feed lots, which without FRER's intervention would have shipped to slaughter. For more information see www.frontrangeequinerescue.org.
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Bill will also improve animal welfare standards in federal research

WASHINGTON— The ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) today commends Congress for crafting an omnibus spending bill that will effectively continue a federal ban on horse slaughter in the U.S. as well as improve animal welfare standards at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC) and other federally-operated agricultural research centers.

“The ASPCA applauds Congressional Leadership for taking the critical and necessary steps to protect animals through this omnibus legislation,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations.  “Congress has rightly voiced their support to continue the long-standing ban on horse slaughter in America as well as to require USMARC to improve its animal welfare standards. The ASPCA thanks Congress for standing up for these important animal protection issues. If signed into law, these will be two huge victories for our nation’s animals.”

Whether horse slaughter occurs in the U.S. or abroad, methods used to slaughter horses rarely result in quick, painless deaths, as horses are difficult to stun and often remain conscious during their butchering and dismemberment. The majority of horses killed for human consumption are young, healthy animals who could otherwise go on to lead productive lives with loving owners. In addition, meat from American horses is unsafe for human consumption since horses are not raised as food animals. Horses are routinely given medications and other substances that are toxic to humans and expressly forbidden by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in animals intended for human consumption.

The omnibus package also includes a robust provision requiring the USDA to ensure that all research conducted at the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center and other federal agricultural research locations adheres to the Animal Welfare Act (AWA), including necessary inspection and reporting requirements, linking $57 million of USDA’s budget to this mandate.

For more information about the ASPCA, or to join the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade, please visit www.aspca.org.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Celebrity-Driven Headlines & Global News Premieres Country Newcomer Callie Twisselman's"Hung Me On The Line" Music Video 

 

Nashville, TN (October 26, 2015) - Celebrity-driven Headlines & Global News premieres Country newcomer Callie Twisselman's new music video, "Hung Me On The Line,"today, as the young star begins a two week stint as guest host on the popular television show Country Fix through November 8.

 

The video concept centers on a classic Western theme with modern-day twists.  Filmed primarily on the Twisselman family ranch in Cholame, California, additional locations include the Varian Ranch and Parkfield Café (Parkfield, CA), "Hung Me On The Line" features a saloon, horses, grasslands and loose women.  A gunshot echoes at the close of the clip, which fades out with shots of Twisselman, playing the cowgirl, riding away.  "Hung Me On The Line" is Callie's current single, following her recent Top 30 MusicRow CountryBreakout™ Chart hit, "Breathe."    

 

 
 

Producer/Director Sam Schneider (Super Bowl, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Memphis May Fire) assumed acting duties as well.  His appearances in the movies "Soldiers Horse," "David and Goliath" and the upcoming "Aquarius" served him well and his experience made for a powerful love interest-pairing with Twisselman, whose previous acting roles includes the movie, "Almost Salinas."   

  

Acting, singing and songwriting aren't Twisselman's only talents:  the young entertainer recently launched her own clothing line, Sassy Girl, and is wearing one of the label's signature white dresses in the video's opening scenes.  "We're new, and so we're always adding new pieces," explains Callie.  "Fall means wonderful neutral and earth tones - and I love fringe, so it's a real mix of stylish colors with a dash of fun." Sassy Girl features dresses, casual tank tops, blouses, vests and sweaters as well. 

The busy blonde will enter 100 MILLION households this week via Country Fix; fans can catch Callie on DISH NetworkBlue Highways TVHeartland TVAngel TwoThe Family Channel and AMG.  "There is so much going on right now," Twisselman admits.  "To have my video debut on Headlines & Global News the same day that the Country Fix shows begin airing is just incredible.  Folks are liking my music.  I am thrilled, excited, over-the-moon happy."

ABOUT CALLIE TWISSELMAN

Raised on her close-knit family's seventh-generation grain and cattle ranch in California, this petite blonde grew up riding horses, roping and competing in rodeos.  Callie's Mom sang in a Country band, and this star-in-the-making names Dolly Parton, George Strait, Johnny Cash and Shania Twain as musical influences.  Callie caught her own case of "stage fever" at the age of 10, and she's been performing ever since.  A talented singer/songwriter, she has entertained music lovers at Fairs and Festivals throughout California and Nevada, and graced the stage at Nashville's famed Bluebird Café.  She's opened for top-tier acts Florida Georgia Line, Lee Brice and Frankie Ballard, and with the Top 30 (MusicRow CountryBreakout™ Chart) success of her debut single, "Breathe," and now"Hung Me On The Line,Callieis spreading her wings and expanding her own touring base.  She just launched a new clothing line, Sassy Girl, and supports the Oral Cancer Foundation charity.  Twisselman enjoys shopping, songwriting and baking. 

Fans can purchase Callie's music at Amazon and iTunes.

Stay social with Callie:

Website:www.callietwisselman.com

FB: https://www.facebook.com/CallieBobsinMusic

Twitter: https://twitter.com/callietwiss

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