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The fate of wild horses in the western United States is an emotional topic for horse lovers. The recent approval by Congress of a provision allowing wild horses to be sold to slaughterhouses is even more heartbreaking.
But a foundation just north of Marquez is making a difference in the lives of mustangs and their new owners.
The horses come by the dozens from over 1,000 miles away. Severe drought and wild fires in Nevada have left them starving.
But they've found their salvation at the Wild Horse Foundation.
Susan Calhoun and her husband Ray Field have a contract with the federal government to save these horses.
"The situation that the federal government has is they got an excellent program, but they're running out of adopters to get them because they're limited by their funds or marketing, and that's where the foundation steps in and says, we'll open the doors to more homes," said Field.
College Station resident James Phillips adopted a mare not long ago from the foundation, as a way to help heal the pain from loosing his old horse.
"There was one little one out there that had very large beautiful eyes and my heart told me that was her," said Phillips.
"It's phenomenal, it's so rewarding to see the love that people give to these animals," said Calhoun.
The horses come to the foundation literally wild. Ray and Susan work to change that.
"When a horse gets aggressive, don't react to him; let him work it out, and he sees the calming effect, and then he'll learn a lot faster. It's a partnership, and we teach them (adopters) how to be a partner with their horses," said Field.
James said it's all about their personalities.
"I just happened to get one that was looking for love, you might say, and she gentled very quickly," said Phillips.
Ray and Susan hope what they're doing educates the public about wild horses, all the while giving as many as they can good homes.
The most recent shipment of horses was delivered to the Wild Horse Foundation December 1. The minimum adoption fee is $125.
To learn how to adopt a wild horse, go to www.wildhorsefoundation.org
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