July 2011– Four years ago a myriad of events led to an increase in unwanted horses. “Unwanted horse” is a loose term that defines every horse which does not have a purpose, including horses that are owned and cared for but are actually unwanted, those whose owners are neglectful, and abandoned horses.
Reports of hundreds of abandoned horses running loose on strip mines and in communities found their way into popular press and the internet. Likewise, images of emaciated horses have been top news stories in Kentucky and around the country. Is the situation as bad as some portray? How do you separate the myth from reality? Is there really anything that can be done? How do the incidents of unwanted horses affect the average horse owner?
At the July 19, 2011, KENA (Kentucky Equine Networking Association) dinner meeting, a panel of experts will provide insight into the plight of Kentucky’s unwanted horses. Presenters include: Dr. Bob Stout, Kentucky State Veterinarian; Dr. David Fugate, West Liberty Veterinary Clinic; Lori Neagle, Kentucky Equine Humane Center; and Earl Hatter, Kentucky Animal Care and Control Association.
“The Kentucky Horse Council has worked extensively with the Department of Agriculture, Veterinary Medical Association, Equine Rescues, and Animal Control Agencies to develop programs that address the needs of unwanted horses,” says Anna Zinkhon, Kentucky Horse Council (KHC) President. “Through coordinated efforts, we have learned a great deal about the extent of the problem and the challenges in finding workable solutions. Unwanted horses aren’t someone else’s problem–they are a concern for all facets of the Kentucky equine community.”
The networking meeting begins at 6 p.m. with registration and a cash bar. During dinner, a special discipline presentation on eventing is scheduled.
The keynote presentation “Unwanted Horses: Why We Still Have Them & How It Affects You” begins at 7:15 p.m. with an overview by Essie Rogers, KHC Director of Education & Welfare.
The evening also includes a silent auction to benefit the KHC SoHo Fund which provides feed for horses when they are confiscated as part of a neglect case. The KHC Geld Voucher program and Equine Safety Net program are funded by SoHo, as well as Coggins testing and transport for Kentucky horses to rescue facilities. Proceeds from the SoHo silent auction will be matched by a generous donation from the Modern Woodmen of America.
What is KENA?
KENA is a program of the Kentucky Horse Council and the UK Equine Initiative. It is an educational and networking dinner series for equine professionals in Kentucky targeted specifically at those who participate in breeding and reproductive services, instruction, training, boarding and showing.
The July 19 dinner is at the Clarion Hotel, located in Lexington, Kentucky. Cost to attend is $25 for the general public and $20 for KHC members. Learn more about KENA or the Kentucky Horse Council–and register.
About The Kentucky Horse Council
The Kentucky Horse Council is a non-profit organization dedicated, through education and leadership, to the protection and development of the Kentucky equine community. The Kentucky Horse Council provides educational programs and information, outreach and communication to Kentucky horse owners and enthusiasts, equine professional networking opportunities through KENA, trail riding advocacy, health and welfare programs, and personal liability insurance and other membership benefits. The specialty Kentucky Horse Council license plate, featuring a foal lying in the grass, provides the primary source of revenue for KHC programs.