The Animal Welfare Council Rolls Out “Lessons About the Unwanted Horse” to Youth Leaders

Animal Welfare Council offering new program for youth interested in horses.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — NOV. 27, 2012 — At both the Colorado Horsemen Convention and the Coalition of State Horse Councils meeting, author Jill Montgomery presented a look at Lessons About the Unwanted Horse, the new program offered through the Animal Welfare Council for youth interested in horses. The reception was enthusiastic: Evaluation comments from participants included “Excellent materials for youth!” and “Need to get this to the kids.” The “Unwanted Horse” has become an all too familiar presence in today’s horse industry, as tough economic times and emerging cultural trends make rational decisions about the care and disposition of animals difficult for horse owners. The dilemma is complex, and engaging the next generation of horse owners is critical to realizing solutions.

The Animal Welfare Council is offering Lessons About the Unwanted Horse in a 6-lesson curriculum that covers the issue from a factual and historical perspective. AWC is offering the program at no cost through its website; it is downloadable either as a package or in parts, at Also, look for your youth horse organization to post a link from their website to the program this winter.

Each lesson includes goals, background information, a teaching outline, and resources for further study, plus student activities meant to underscore the lesson in various entertaining, lively ways. The underlying message reinforced in all six lessons is the vital importance of conscious, responsible horse ownership.

Program highlights include:

  • Differentiating livestock from companion animals
  • Cultural perceptions about horses
  • Defining and explaining the Unwanted Horse
  • The legislative process and pending laws affecting horses
  • Current options for disposition of unwanted horses
  • Challenges faced by horse rescues and sanctuaries
  • Specific costs and obligations of horse ownership
  • Evaluation “Jeopardy”-style game

Based on current research by acknowledged industry experts, the curriculum is suitable for use in youth activity settings such as 4-H, Girl or Boy Scouts, or Pony Club as well as in traditional classrooms and home school programs. Lessons are designed for the 10-12 age group, but may be easily modified for older students. Each lesson is aligned with stated Common Core State Standards and may be used to teach such skills as mathematics, writing, vocabulary building, reading comprehension, civics, understanding statistics, and more.

Animal Welfare Council members support the use of animals in recreation, entertainment, industry and sports. The organization is dedicated to advancing the responsible and humane use of animals in these activities. For more information about the AWC, visit or contact Jill Montgomery at 719-547-7677 or






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