Equine Rescue League (ERL)

Our Adoptable Pet List

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Our Featured Equines... Plum and Lula

Plum is a TB chestnut mare and Lula is a dark bay TB mare. Both came to the Equine Rescue League in January of 2008 and both were pregnant. Plum is 14 years old, Lula is 12 years old. Both have been fully rehabilitated, are sound and friendly, have lovely personalities but will require additional training. Interested parties please contact the Equine Rescue League @ (540) 822-4577. The adoption program requires the adoptee to live within 3 hours of Lovettsville, Virginia.

Who We Are

The Equine Rescue League was founded by Pat Rogers in 1990. In its first year, the ERL provided care and shelter to over 100 horses and ponies. Most of these abused, neglected and unwanted equines were placed in qualified homes.

ERL's Goals

The Equine Rescue League is an organization that supports the responsible use of working, sport and pleasure horses and ponies. Our goals are to: 1) Provide care, rehabilitation and training for horses and other large animals at the ERL farm shelter, and to adoption them to qualified persons. 2) Provide transportation and holding facilities for animals seized by county and state humane officers and for unwanted animals. 3) Create educational programs (on the subjects of basic health care and horse abuse) for horse owners, youngsters and humane officers. 4) Create public awareness about horse neglect and abuse issues. 5) Investigate, in coordination with humane officers, to reduce abuse and neglect occurrences in the Greater Washington area. 6) Provide humane euthanasia services for aged or ill horses to prevent these animals from being subjected to the horror of auctions and slaughter transportation.

Bitsy-The Mare Who Started It All

The Equine Rescue League did not exist in time for Bitsy, a 5 year old Thoroughbred mare who was so weak she was whipped to make her stand and go through the auction ring, where she brought $7.00. She probably didn't survive the grueling truck ride to the slaughterhouse. When she saw Bitsy, Pat Rogers, ERL's founder, was assisting with investigations into conditions at auction yards. At this particular sale, she didn't even have with her the seven dollars to buy Bitsy, nor did she have a place to take her. Pat had to walk away from Bitsy, but the memory is still fresh in her mind. Pat Rogers promised this mare with the pleading eyes that she would devote her life to stopping abuse. In 1990, Pat founded the Equine Rescue League in Leesburg, Virginia.

Our Farm

For 15 years, The Equine Rescue League leased the 66-acre Churchland Farm, outside the city of Leesburg, Virginia. However, in 2008 the ERL obtained land of its own and moved to Promise Kept Farm in Lovettsville, Virginia. Please note that all donations to the ERL are tax deductible and go directly into defraying the operational costs of the shelter. If you would like to donate or become a member of the ERL, please contact us at (540) 822-4577. Thank you for your consideration of the needs of the equines in our care. Donations may be made at our website (http://www.equinerescueleague.org) via PayPal.

Why a Rescue Organization for Horses?

In today's society, many horses are owned as companion or sport animals rather than as a working part of a farm or other business. As such, horses are subject to the same forms of mistreatment as cats, dogs and other companion animals. They are victims of outright neglect. They are sometimes abandoned in fields or left locked in barns. They are whipped, beaten and kicked into "submission". They fall victim to poor health as a result of inadequate care from well-meaning, but uneducated owners. And they are subject to one cruelty our dogs and cats are not... the slaughter house. The ERL provides a haven for mistreated, neglected and abandoned horses, ponies, donkeys, and mules. We also take in horses whose owners can no longer, for whatever reason, care for them properly. In essence, ERL provides the same services as a humane organization dedicated to house pets, just on a "larger" scale.

Adopting a friend

Please Note! Due to the Equine Rescue League's pre-adoption screening and post-adoption follow-up procedures, we can not adopt animals to homes farther than a three hour drive from Lovettsville, Virginia. This range, more or less, includes northern and central Virginia, most of Maryland, eastern West Virginia, and the District of Columbia. If you are interested in adopting a rescued horse, but live outside ERL's adoption range, please check our Equine Rescue Organizations list on our Links page to see if there is a similar shelter near you.

Before a horse can be adopted from the ERL, the following procedures must be followed:

You must complete and return an Equine Rescue League Preliminary Adoption Application. Please allow 7 to 10 days for the ERL to receive and review the application. After that time, please call the ERL at (540) 822-4577 to schedule an appointment to go over the application, tour the farm, and to have a short interview with an ERL staff member.

If the personal interview is satisfactory and if the ERL has a potentially suitable horse at the time, the ERL will schedule an appointment to evaluate the potential adopter's facilities. In addition, the ERL will conduct interviews of the references provided by the potential adopter on the Preliminary Adoption Application.

Upon satisfactory completion of the above, the ERL will schedule a minimum of five (5) working sessions with the potential horse to determine if there is a suitable match.

Upon completion of the five sessions, it will be determined whether or not the horse and potential adopter are compatible. The ERL may at that time require additional sessions and will approve or deny an adoption. Please note that the ERL reserves the right to deny adoption for any reason in its sole discretion, and is not obligated to state any reason for such denial.

When all requirements and preliminary adoption procedures have been satisfied, the ERL will require the following at the time of adoption: --Completion of a Permanent Adoption Contract with such terms and conditions as ERL may determine in its sole judgment and discretion. --Payment in full of a non-refundable adoption fee which is based upon each individual horse and set at the ERL's sole discretion.

Upon final adoption of a horse, the adopter is responsible for the transportation arrangements from the ERL farm to the adopter's facility in a manner acceptable to the ERL.

The ERL reserves the right to conduct unscheduled follow-up checks on the adopted horse and facility at the ERL's discretion. Upon placement of a horse, the adopter is required to submit to the ERL an annual health statement from the adopter's veterinarian and farrier.

Come Visit Us!

If you would like to help ERL care for needy horses, the first step is to call the office at (540) 822-4577 to schedule your first visit. We will arrange for you to work with a staff member or veteran volunteer until you learn how things work. Once you have had your "orientation" visit, it is entirely up to you when and how often you come to help. All we ask is that you call ahead and let us know when you can come, so we can schedule the day's work load according to how much help will be available. Many people choose to come on the same day each week. Others just come when they can! Morning feeding begins at 8 AM every day (the horses don't know the meaning of the phrase "day off"!) Once everybody's bellies are full, there is a variety of tasks to take care of from mucking stalls to writing "Thank You" notes to assisting the farrier. Every day is a little different. The day ends like it began - feed time again at at 4 PM! Horse care experience is not necessary to become an ERL volunteer. You will never be asked to do anything you feel uncomfortable with. As you learn more about horses, you can tackle more jobs if you feel up to them. No question is "stupid"... the more you ask, the more you learn.
Equine Rescue League
PO Box 4366

Leesburg, VA 20177
Phone: (540) 822-4577

Email: bubbasays2@aol.com

OR VISIT OUR WEB SITE www.equinerescueleague.org

Click here for a list of pets at this shelter





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