Renaissance Rescue Ranch

 

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“A horse is the projection of peoples’ dreams about themselves – strong, powerful, beautiful – and it has the capability of giving us escape from our mundane existence.” – Pam Brown

This morning I want to recognize a horse rescue located in Farmington, MO.

“People think we save these horses, but the truth is – they save us.” – Barbara Hutchinson founder of Renaissance Rescue.

Barbara had a lucrative career as an attorney and she walked away from it to turn her full-time attention to horses.  She was know around the show jumping circles and was a a regular competitor.   Barbara and her husband, Laurence relocated to Farmington, MO. in 2005.  Not long after came Zoe, Bailey and then Tristan, dogs who found a loving home then came cats.

Not long after came the horses.  As word got out about her home for retired and injured racehorses, Fairmount  Racetrack in Illinois began sending horses whose careers had been ended due to injury.  Barbara says with a smile on her face, “I just couldn’t turn them away.”

 

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“I call horses “divine mirrors” – they reflect back the emotions you put in.  If you put in love and respect and kindness and curiosity, the horse will return that.” – Allan Hamilton

The Horses

Some arrive with injuries they incurred at the track that ended their careers.  Renaissance Rescue Ranch (RRR) provides rehabilitation and medical care.  Some have been abandoned and some were on their way to the shaughterhouse.

A major international racing syndicate, Team Valor, also places horses with them.  Barbara says she has put a lot of miles on her truck retrieving horses that were many states away.

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Their Mission

RRR’s mission is to rescue, protect, and rehabilitate thoroughbreds in need.  We are a “no kill” sanctuary and will never put down a horse unless there is a medical reason and all other options have been exhausted.  Our hope is to find loving homes for all our horses.

Renaissance Rescue Ranch is located on 75 acres and presently caring for 130 horses.  There are medical expenses, food, shelter and maintenance costs also.  Visitors are welcome and tours are available.  You get a chance to visit it is certainly worth your time.

The expense of taking care of these equines is a huge undertaking and any volunteers or donations is greatly appreciated.  You can visit their website: http://www.renaissancerescue.com and donate through their PayPal account or send your donation to:

Renaissance Rescue Ranch

4305 HWY O

Farmington, MO 63640

(573)-915-4627

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RRR doesn’t rescue only Thoroughbreds.  They have quite a diversity of equines.  I have visited on numerous occasions and can tell you that their rescues are very well taken care of.  They are fed well and loved by the staff and volunteers.  If you live in the area and want to help with daily chores they welcome volunteers.

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Thank you for taking time to read my blog.  This is a very worth while rescue and I appreciate the work they do in giving these equines another chance in life.  My hat is off to them for doing such a good job.  Remember, spread the love.

So You Want To Be A Farrier?

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I remember when one of the local colleges offered an eight week course for folks that wanted to be a farrier.  Over time I had a few clients who told me,”Well this will be the last time you will have to shoe ole Dobbin.”  Me: “Oh yeah.  You selling him?”  They would go on to tell me that they had signed up for the 8 week course at the college and they would be doing their own shoeing.  Out of 6 clients that signed up for the class I only had one client shoe all four feet of his horse.  He then hired me back, said he had enough.

Then there are the ones that sit there and watch you as you work and they tell you, I think I can do that.  Looks pretty easy.   Then there is that age old question, ever get kicked?  Really?

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Then there are the bargain hunters.  They have no loyalty to their farrier.  They are just looking to get the cheapest price they can.  I remember one time while fueling my truck a guy hollers over at me and says, how much.  I said $2.55 a gallon.  He said no, how much?  I said, well it will probably hold around 30 gallons today.  He immediately says, NOOOO!  How much do you charge to shoe horses.  I said, do you have a farrier now?  He said yes but I thought you might be cheaper at which I immediately replied, you couldn’t afford me.  Yep, they are loyal to the end.

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Then you have the internet farrier.  Yep you read it right.  This is the group that cruises the internet to learn everything they can find concerning ” How to Shoe Your Horse”.  So while you are shoeing their horse they are standing looking over your shoulder telling you what you are doing wrong.  I mean geeze, these guys are pros.  They learned from that all important school “Lame Horses or Us.”

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Then you have the farrier that if someone doesn’t agree with your assessment of his/her shoe job they swell up like a little bantee rooster and get their feelings hurt.  Bring a horse into a room of 4 farriers and you will get 10 different ways to shoe the horse.  The lovely world of horseshoeing.  Also be prepared to be told you charge too much.

Then there are the great things you get to experience.  I remember one such time.  I was on the back end of the horse with its back leg over mine when all of a sudden the horse made a gut sound that sounded like a freight train roaring down the track.  I just got out of my mouth, well he shouldn’t colic any time soon, when all at once its tail went up and yep, liquid road apples come out of the back end like it was coming out of a power washer.  Before I could get out of the way it hit me on the side of the head and my back and…..never mind just trust me it was a mess.

Seriously though, I am proud of my trade.  I am a firm believer in continued education.  It is hard work and you have to be well disciplined.  It is too easy to get up in the morning and say, I think I will call in sick today.  You have to be a business man and be able to deal with the public.

I am semi-retired now.  I still have around 40 head of horses on my books.  I am thankful for all those who helped me better myself.  Dr. Don Walsh, Dr. Amy Rucker, Dr. Joanne Kramer, Kelly Case, Bob Schantz, Dr. Thomas Loafman to just name a few.   If you decide to walk the path of a farrier I urge you to seek out continued education through clinics.  Bob Schantz, owner of Spanish Lake Blacksmith Shop, along with Homestead Veterinary Hospital, Dr Kramer and Dr Rucker have some great workshops during the winter months.  Be sure to check them out.

Thanks for reading my blog.  I deeply appreciate it.  If you are considering a career shoeing horses I wish you well.  It is hard work but take pride in yourself and your work and it can be a real rewarding experience.  Spread the love!