Resources for Responsible Horse Ownership: Financial Options & Assistance


The American Association of Equine Practitioners estimates that the minimum yearly cost to care for a horse, not including veterinary and farrier expenses, is $1,825. Add in veterinary and farrier costs, as well as boarding expenses in some cases, and the yearly cost for keeping one horse can reach $5,000.

There are many reasons why horse owners are unable to keep their horses, including illness, injury, age, and expense.

If you are a horse owner who is facing a difficult decision, please know that there are options, from selling or leasing your horse, donating it to a worthy organization, or even euthanasia if the horse is not adoptable.

Following are some resources that you may find helpful:

Hay Banks

Grassroots of Central Oregon

Grassroots of Central Oregon is a food bank for horses. They can be contacted by e-mail at or by phone at (541) 408-6079.

Oregon Hay Bank

To apply for hay, visit Oregon Hay Bank.

Horse Rescues

Blue Sky Horse Rescue

Klamath Falls: (541) 591-2172,

Equamore Horse Sanctuary

Ashland: (541) 482-5550

Equine Outreach

Bend: (541) 419-4842,

Horse Animal Rescue Team (HART)

Yamhill: (503) 662-4167,

Lighthouse Farm Sanctuary

Scio: (503) 394-4486,

Strawberry Mountain Mustangs Inc.

Roseburg: (541) 784-5522,

United Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

Yamhill: (503) 662-0082,


Oregon Horse Welfare Council

The Oregon Horse Welfare Council is comprised of individuals from rescue organizations, breed groups, veterinarians, state officials, law enforcement agencies, equine media, and concerned citizens. The council has formed a horse foster program, a list of horse rescues in the state and a hay bank.

Unwanted Horse Coalition

The mission of the UHC is to reduce the number of unwanted horses and improve their welfare through education. The coalition's "Own Responsibly" campaign includes a handbook, which offers information on the responsibilities of horse ownership, options for owners with unwanted horses, retirement and rescue facilities in the state, and tax implications of donating a horse to a charity.

Euthanasia & Cremation

Dignified Pet Services

Dignified Pet Services offers whole body, individual cremation for horses and provides transportation from your home to their facility.

Sound Equine Options

Sound Equine Options is a veterinary-based equine relief fund. It is a 501(c)3 organization that provides veterinary-directed programs to measurably reduce the number of suffering and starving horses in Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington.

Vaccine & Veterinary Assistance

Equine Community Resources (Central Oregon)

Equine Community Resources (ECR) was founded in 2013, becoming the Central Oregon affiliate of Sound Equine Options (SEO), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. It is a needs based service organization committed to helping horses and their two-legged families experiencing personal or short-term financial difficulties in caring for their horses

Unwanted Horse Veterinary Relief Campaign

Through the Unwanted Horse Veterinary Relief Campaign, qualifying equine rescue and retirement facilities can receive complimentary equine vaccines for horses in their care, protecting the horses’ health and making them more adoptable.

Other Resources

American Association of Equine Practitioners

The AAEP offers resources for horse owners, including a booklet on Care Guidelines for Equine Rescue and Retirement facilities.

American Veterinary Medical Association

The AVMA has an FAQ on horse slaughter and the issue of unwanted horses in our country. provides articles and information on horse rescue and welfare issues, including articles about the horse slaughter issue.

Northwest Equine Practitioners Association

NEPA is a membership association for equine veterinarians in the NW.

Updated: 2016-07-08 07:00:00

Note: The Oregon Veterinary Medical Association is neither responsible for nor specifically endorses the content of these organizations and/or Web sites, but offers these links as a courtesy. If you have specific questions or concerns, please contact the organization directly.