Drifter’s Hearts of Hope (DHOH) rescues at risk horses, horses whose future is likely dismal or non-existent without rescue. The process in finding the right forever home with the right forever person considers many factors. The environment where the horse will be kept is an important one. A pre-adoption home check tries to foresee the safety, health and happiness of a horse that might be placed in that setting.
Things That We Look At:
Is there adequate and safe shelter? Horses need protection from direct sunlight, precipitation, wind and other inclement weather. Shelters should be well constructed and not have any nails, boards or other projections that might injure the horse. The shelter should be high enough that the horse can stand naturally and the entrance to the shelter should be wide enough that the horse will not bang a hip on the way in or out. There should be adequate ventilation and light. There should be good footing without unusual accumulation of manure.
If kept in a stall and run, the horse should have reasonable turn out time to exercise and, if possible, graze in a pasture. Is the fencing in the pasture and/or pen safe and secure? Is the height appropriate for the horse that may be adopted? Sagging wire creates a hazard, as does barbed wire in any condition. Barbed wire is only acceptable on large acreages where the horse has little likelihood of being run into the fence. Are t-posts used? If so, are they capped? DHOH requires that t-posts be capped. We look for hazards such as debris or discarded equipment that might injure the horse.
How will the horse’s nutritional needs be met? What hay will be fed? Is the potential adopter prepared to meet the special nutritional needs of a senior or very young horse, if applicable? Will the horse have reliable access to fresh water? Salt must be available.
How many horses will be kept on the property? Over-crowding increases the potential for injury, but at the same time horses have a strong herd instinct and are happiest with horse companionship. DHOH requires that adopted horses have at least one other horse for companionship. If there are horses on the property at the time of the visit, what is their condition? Do they look well fed? Have their feet been cared for? What is their behavior? Are they interested and alert, or do they seem bored? Do they seem comfortable around people or frightened or disinterested?
We hope that potential adopters are not intimidated by a pre-adoption home check. Our goal is to assure a safe place for the horse and a good experience for the adopter. DHOH will work with you to prepare for the home check, and if necessary, can do a repeat visit after any suggested changes are made. Before scheduling a home check, consider the following:
Drifter's Hearts of Hope