WASHINGTON, DC — APR. 8, 2013 — The Unwanted Horse Coalition’s (UHC) Operation Gelding program continues to help castrate stallions nationwide. Since the beginning of the year the program has helped to geld over 85 horses in six states across the country.
The program, which was first launched in late August 2010, is able to continue aiding in the castration of stallions thanks to the support and seed money provided by the American Association of Equine Practitioners Foundation, Pfizer, and the UHC. Proceeds from the sale of the Dr. Jennifer Williams’ book How to Start and Run a Rescue from of the UHC’s website also go to the Operation Gelding program. Books can be purchased by going to the UHC website: www.unwantedhorsecoalition.org.
Operation Gelding is designed to offer funding assistance to organizations, associations, and events that wish to conduct a public gelding clinic under the name and guidelines of Operation Gelding. An organization that has completed an Operation Gelding clinic will receive funding of $50 per horse, $1,000 maximum, to aid in the costs associated with the clinic.
Dani Horton and Lisa Rice of the GFAS verified non-profit Hope Equine Rescue held a free gelding clinic in Auburndale, FL in February and gelded an incredible 42 horses. Rice said, “We would like to thank the Unwanted Horse Coalition for their support through their Operation Gelding program. The clinic was a huge success and due to their funding assistance, we were able to geld 42 horses! We look forward to working with UHC in the future and appreciate the many resources that they provide.”
The New Mexico Horse Council held an Operation Gelding clinic in January with the help of Kristin Kreger and Dr. Dave Fly. Through research Kreger and Dr. Fly learned that the need for castration in New Mexico exists primarily in poor rural areas and frequently the owners of horses in these areas don't use a vet or have a horse trailer. “We made a difference for four horses thanks to UHC! Thank you UHC for providing this “stepping stone” for equine population management in the state of New Mexico. This program is a great long term and short term solution for equine management,” said Kreger.
Delores Hanser from Paws Ranch Equine Rescue in North Carolina held her first Operation Gelding clinic along with the help of veterinarian Dr. Callie Fogle. On March 1 they castrated a herd of 15 semi feral stallions. Hanser told us, “Our clinic was a great success thanks to all that participated. We appreciate all the UHC has done to help our organization and unwanted horses.” Callie Fogle DVM, DACVS; Assistant Professor, Equine Surgery, NC State College of Veterinary Medicine said, “I’d like to thank the Unwanted Horse Coalition for funding the castration clinic and supporting the health of the semi-feral herd of horses. The clinic enabled participating veterinarians from NC State's College of Veterinary Medicine, Carolina Equine Clinic, East Carolina Veterinary Service, and Rutherford Large Animal Services to teach NC State veterinary students the technique of castration. The students also learned darting techniques to restrain the horses from Sue Stuska, a wildlife biologist with the Cape Lookout National Seashore. The castrations were conducted to help the owner with the cost of reducing additional births in the semi-feral herd."
All Vegas Horses and Karin Cartwood were able to hold their first Operation Gelding clinic in Las Vegas, NV in March. Cartwood tells the UHC that the clinic really made an impact on the Vegas equine community, “The community was very impressed with this clinic, so many attendees said they could not have afforded it otherwise!”
Nikki Walden and Anne Thornton held their first Operation Gelding clinic in Greenville, TX with the help of the Unwanted Horse Coalition. They were able to castrate 11 stallions in February and were very happy with the success of their clinic. Thornton told the UHC, “Working with the UHC was fantastic. The owners that participated were very appreciative of the assistance provided to have their horses gelded. My veterinarian thought it was a fantastic idea and would like to see more offered if possible.”
Faith Equine Rescue in Mulberry Florida held a clinic in Mulberry, FL in March under the guidance of Dawn Bazemore. “Thanks to the Unwanted Horse Coalition's Operation Gelding we now have 14 less stallions. This is a huge relief for us as a rescue, knowing that we have been able to prevent foals from being born and potentially becoming unwanted or abused. Thank you for all that you do for these horses, without these services we would be in so much more trouble than we are now,” said Bazemore.
Upcoming clinics will be held in CO, FL, VA, WA, IA, and NM.
Operation Gelding currently has funding available for organizations that would like to host their own Operation Gelding clinic. For more information on how to host your own clinic, contact Ericka Caslin, UHC Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-296-4031.