For Immediate Release 
December 9, 2015

New Mexico – In late September 2015, Los Alamos Public Safety Aide Alysha Lenderman was faced with a dilemma. While responding to a welfare check on a Los Alamos resident who had not been seen in a several days, Lenderman and a fellow officer uncovered a dire animal hoarding situation that included five horses and more than 15 Pomeranian dogs. They discovered the owner had been hospitalized and was in a coma, making the welfare and recovery of the severely neglected dogs an immediate priority. Lenderman saw to the dogs, while placing all five horses in the care of one compassionate local volunteer. Though the horses were in better condition than the Pomeranians, a new dilemma arose—finding the funds to purchase enough feed for all five horses. 

Fortunately for these five horses, there is the Equine Protection Fund.

“I knew of the Equine Protection Fund, run by Animal Protection of New Mexico (APNM), that financially assists with feed and other care for horses in situations like this,” Lenderman said. “I called up APNM, who immediately coordinated between the volunteer sheltering the horses and a local feed store to purchase hay for the animals.”

In December 2015, The Equine Protection Fund, New Mexico’s first statewide humane safety network for horses, donkeys, and mules, celebrates a monumental milestone – more than 700 animals have received relief services since the fund began five years ago. Through the Fund’s various programs, which include equine feed support, financial assistance with veterinary care, gelding assistance and humane euthanasia, families can find the financial support they need to feed horses because of temporary financial setbacks, and veterinary support can be provided to rescued horses in the state’s equine shelters.

When APNM received Lenderman’s request, the Equine Protection Fund coordinators acted fast. Within 24 hours, they had set up a payment with the nearby CWW Feed of San Ysidro for five weeks’ worth of hay, with the option of purchasing more if needed. Michele Ryan, an employee of CWW Feed later wrote on social media: “Thank you, APNM, for taking care of New Mexico’s horses in need! Not only did you take care of the horses, but you supported a local business in San Ysidro and we really appreciate it!” 

While APNM coordinates the services, The Equine Protection Fund is completely funded through individual donations and foundation grants. 

“Through the generous support of individuals and organizations who understand the need to protect New Mexico horses, the Equine Protection Fund has proven that lifesaving care for horses is economically feasible,” said Phil Carter, equine campaign manager for APNM. “Our programs have brought relief to over 700 equines at an average cost of less than $175 per animal. With all that has been accomplished, we as New Mexicans can see the benefit of providing each and every horse a life of compassion and dignity.”  

The Fund provides more than just financial assistance; it creates a safety net that can help all New Mexico horses experience humane care throughout their lives, while ensuring a healthy and sustainable future for equines. In October 2015, the Fund was proud to assist in a special case to prevent unwanted breeding of horses and to ensure a forever home for four horses who were at death’s door. That month, Kathy Collins, a kind-hearted horse owner living in Tularosa, placed a bid on four emaciated horses who had been seized by the state Livestock Board from a situation of severe neglect. Retired and living on a pension, Collins reached out to the Equine Protection Fund for assistance in gelding three of the horses, all stallions, to prevent future births. 

“I fear what would have happened to these three stallions and the mare if I hadn’t stepped in and placed that bid—they likely would have been purchased by kill buyers and sent to a slaughterhouse in Mexico,” Collins said. “I’m so grateful that this program is available to financially help people to do the right thing for horses.”

To ensure the availability of feed assistance and veterinary support for horses far into the future, the Fund is currently fundraising through 2016 for a special $2 million Endowment. To find out more about the endowment and how you can contribute, please email Victoria Kanof of Animal Protection of New Mexico or call (575) 405-8567. 

Photo Captions: (For high resolution images, please email First Image - Los Alamos Horses: The Equine Protection Fund provides funding for families struggling to care for their equines. APNM provided feed within 24 hours for this horse, one of the five rescued in Los Alamos.

Second Image - Tularosa Horse: Horses that appear underfed or neglected, such as this horse who was rescued by Kathy Collins, can be reported to APNM's Animal Cruelty Hotline at 1-877-5-HUMANE. 

Media Contact:
Sara Palmer, Communications Director, APNM
Tel: (505) 265-2322, ext. 31

Equine Program Contact:
Phil Carter, Program Manager, APNM
Tel: (505) 967-5297


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