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  1. #1
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    Default Rescues and breeding.

    Coming from the dog world rescue efforts for many years, it was common knowledge that was best trying to educate people about the already millions of dogs out there and how many animal control kills a year and please spay and neuter and definitely don't possibly add to them by breeding without a very, very carefully thought out good reason.

    No matter who anyone is, any one involved in the world of horses for any time with more than one or two horses has at some time bought or helped with some horse in need. That is the way the horse world works.

    If you are a breeder, because of the larger numbers of horses that tend to pass thru your hands, you are even more aware of the many out there in need, so you also do help some when you can.

    Now, if someone is managing a rescue, I would think that person would, by definition, NOT be a breeder, as that presents a very clear conflict of interest.

    I would think that no one really can see the many, many dogs and horses out there, many excellent breeding stock themselves if we didn't have such an oversupply and find any logical excuse whatsoever to breed one more.

    I say to run a rescue and breed on the side is antagonistic to each other at several levels.

    First, there is the PR problem when you get horses in from some breeder, if you may be picking them over for your own breeding, which in the end will produce more of the same on an already full market.

    Second, the same thought expanded, there are already way too many, that is one reason why there is need for rescues and why add to those numbers at all?

    I would say, if someone feels that strongly about being a breeder today and about helping the unwanted horses out there, helping rescues is fine, of course, each one helps where and how they can best.

    Being a rescue itself, on the other hand, I feel requires a higher level of commitment to the problem and that means not to breed not a single horse or dog, regardless of how much you want to see what you can produce.

    Then, this is a large world and no one made me judge and jury.
    I would not demand others live by what I think makes sense or is best, but reserve the right to have my opinion, that is as stated.
    What do others think?

    There was a question if the rescue manager in the CCH case is a breeder herself and that prompted me to think about this.



  2. #2
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    Amen.
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  3. #3
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    I'm not anti-breeding. I think breeding with good research and to a specific purpose is a good thing. And I think what is termed a backyard breeder--or more positively, a small breeding operation--can also be a good thing.

    I believe a breeder of any scale can without conflict run a rescue. A rescue to me is assisting law enforcement or other groups with animals that have been seized.

    But I also believe that a breeder of any scale can be involved with, and even run, an organization which assists with placing at risk horses (at risk for seizure, at risk for auction, what have you) without any conflict.

    So, say I'm in the market for a horse. Let's say I went to a breeder who also has a rescue. If my desire is for a registered horse, if my desire is breed and registry-specific, I would look at what the breeder had to offer from the breeders own stock. But say I wanted a task-specific horse. I would look at the rescue stock and see what might fill my needs.

    I don't see either role as ethically exclusive.

    Editedto add: I don't think horses in a rescue or in an at risk rehoming situation should be bred by the rescue or the organization.
    Last edited by CarrieK; Oct. 5, 2012 at 08:41 AM. Reason: to add a thought
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  4. #4
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    I know a very well-known and very responsible German Shepherd breeder here in Atlanta that also does rescue "on the side" especially with dogs that may be a little bit too much to handle for a standard unprepared rescue to keep/try to adopt out. I see nothing wrong with that, but this breeder is incredibly responsible, can tell you where all of her puppies are currently, and has several requirements before being considered to purchase one of her pups.

    I think the problem comes when you have a breeding business running along with a supposedly non-profit organization, but you don't have records keeping the two wholly separate (separate Tax ID numbers, etc.) That's when red flags pop up for me.

    If the breeder (horse, dog, whatever) also had horses available for adoption, I'd definitely do some thorough research on the breeder, why they have rescues, etc.
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  5. #5
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    Default

    My gut reaction is that no way I would give money to a rescue where the person running it also was a breeder.

    When I thought about it, it's more that no way I would do that for any of the rescues I know of where the person running it is also a breeder. I think if a breeder has farmland which produces hay for winter and fields from which horses get a lot of their nutrition in summer and that breeder has responsibly cut back breeding where it makes sense in the current market - a rescue and breeding setup on the same land can make sense. Such a breeder wouldn't likely be taking the rescues in for the breeding program, but if he/she did, would go through the correct process to do so.

    I know of a "trainer" who is both training for a retraining program and advertising her abilities as a talented re-trainer outside that program. In itself, not a problem. But she is marketing the horses from the retraining program as if they were her own, not part of the program, and appears to be taking the horses she feels are most talented into her own possession prior to them fully entering the program. Total conflict of interest there to me, and makes me uninterested in getting a horse from her, ever. (Her poor riding does, too!) Part of that perhaps comes from comparing the program to the sheer excellence I see from CANTER Midatlantic, so perhaps it's unfair of me...
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bluey View Post
    First, there is the PR problem when you get horses in from some breeder, if you may be picking them over for your own breeding, which in the end will produce more of the same on an already full market.
    I think this would be one of the big problems. If you run a rescue and breed but then assist with a seizure of horses of your breed and keep even one to add to your breeding program, you could create the impression that you assisted with or pushed for that seizure only to add to your breeding business.

    I would like to see more horses breeders involved in rescue at some level - whether that be donating, fostering, volunteering, whatever.

    However the only times I've seen people claiming to breed while running a rescue - it hasn't worked well.
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  7. #7
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    That's a tough one. From a dog rescue perspective, IF the person is a highly respected breeder, is breeding very selectively to improve the breed, is breeding for certain clientele (for the show ring, for hunting, etc) and has all puppies placed before breeding, chooses to help rescue dogs and keeps everything completely separate, then I don't have a problem.

    For example, the collie rescue I volunteer with has a volunteer who breeds on a very limited basis (4 litters in 20 years) and shows dogs of a different breed...not collies She fell in love with collies and is now volunteering with us. She does compete her collie in agility. She's a great foster home and volunteer, but she loves the show ring.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  8. #8
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    Default

    I am a breeder. I know, just shoot me now. That said, I am back to the age old argument that the vast majority of horses that need rescued should never have been bred in the 1st place. We can't just STOP breeding ("we" meaning us responsible breeders ) or the only horses that would eventually be left to choose from would be ones that should never have been brought into this world.

    I know several people in the breeding world who rescue on a small time basis, out of their own pocket (not a 501c), mostly their own breed as they somehow feel more empathy for them, and I think that that is wonderful. The problem arises when there is the appearance of impropriety in an organization that has tax exempt status and is also running their own business on the side be that breeding/showing/training/boarding whatever. How do you prove that they aren't using their tax exempt status to buy grain/supplies whatever? And even if they are keeping separate books, only the rescue's books would/should be transparent.
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  9. #9
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    The other question that seems to be implied is if rescued horses should ever be bred? And I think the answer to that is quite simple. Judge on a case by case basis. Blanket statements don't help anyone. Any horse can become a victim of the owner's poor circumstance/judgement etc.

    I've used this example before, but we were at an Oldenburg inspection where a stunning Tantris mare was being presented for breeding approval. She had been found in a slaughter pen, identified by her microchip and the Verband in Germany had reissued her papers. That was a horse that had truly slipped through the cracks due to who knows what issue with the owner, but it would have been wrong to deny that mare a breeding home due to the fact that on that particular day she needed rescued.
    Holly
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iron Horse Farm View Post
    I am a breeder. I know, just shoot me now. That said, I am back to the age old argument that the vast majority of horses that need rescued should never have been bred in the 1st place. We can't just STOP breeding ("we" meaning us responsible breeders ) or the only horses that would eventually be left to choose from would be ones that should never have been brought into this world.

    I know several people in the breeding world who rescue on a small time basis, out of their own pocket (not a 501c), mostly their own breed as they somehow feel more empathy for them, and I think that that is wonderful. The problem arises when there is the appearance of impropriety in an organization that has tax exempt status and is also running their own business on the side be that breeding/showing/training/boarding whatever. How do you prove that they aren't using their tax exempt status to buy grain/supplies whatever? And even if they are keeping separate books, only the rescue's books would/should be transparent.
    Exactly. For instance, my lovely collie is a conformation nightmare. Do I care? No, she's a pet. Should she have been bred? Absolutely not.

    I recall getting a lot of crap when I posted on a newbie's thread who wanted to breed her horse for the track. I don't even read the breeding forum...too many breeding newbies who don't have a clue what they're doing and too many COTHERS giving them pats on the back and encouraging them. It just infuriates me.

    A breeder who knows what they're doing, is breeding for a certain market, and has a reasonable exception of finding a buyer for their horses, I'm all for it. A backyard breeder (not as in one who has a small, well run operation but defined as someone with no experience and little knowledge)...well that's who I find fault with.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  11. #11
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    I know a couple of GSD breeders who are the go-to person in their regions when a GSD needs help. The good, responsible breeders know their breed, know their needs and have a network of people to draw on when a dog needs a home. They are supremely placed to help their chosen breed.

    But...there is a world of difference between those breeders and the idiots with some intact animals, who are breeding indiscriminately. I don't believe people like that should be involved in breeding OR rescuing. They don't have the knowledge base to do either correctly. Their organizational system for either activity is too haphazard and they invariably make both breeders AND rescuers look bad. It doesn't matter if we are talking about dogs, horses or gold fish.

    Rescues need to work well with the good breeders, and good breeders should be encouraged to become involved in rescue. To ignore everything that the good ones can bring to the table is short sighted and does nothing but encourage the Us Vs. Them mentality that so many seem to be comfortable with. Not saying anyone on this particular thread is propagating that Us Vs. Them mentality, but some breeders think rescuers are a bunch of loons trying to outlaw breeding entirely and some rescuers think ALL breeders are the root of the problem.
    Sheilah



  12. #12
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    My 'favourite' (being sarcastic) is a horse rescue that had the community build her a barn "for the rescues". It was a very nice thing to do ....except she uses it for her breeding business. The rescue horses - when there are any - never see the inside of the barn. Now THAT, I'm disgusted with, on so many levels.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoRider View Post
    I know a couple of GSD breeders who are the go-to person in their regions when a GSD needs help. The good, responsible breeders know their breed, know their needs and have a network of people to draw on when a dog needs a home. They are supremely placed to help their chosen breed.

    But...there is a world of difference between those breeders and the idiots with some intact animals, who are breeding indiscriminately. I don't believe people like that should be involved in breeding OR rescuing. They don't have the knowledge base to do either correctly. Their organizational system for either activity is too haphazard and they invariably make both breeders AND rescuers look bad. It doesn't matter if we are talking about dogs, horses or gold fish.

    Rescues need to work well with the good breeders, and good breeders should be encouraged to become involved in rescue. To ignore everything that the good ones can bring to the table is short sighted and does nothing but encourage the Us Vs. Them mentality that so many seem to be comfortable with. Not saying anyone on this particular thread is propagating that Us Vs. Them mentality, but some breeders think rescuers are a bunch of loons trying to outlaw breeding entirely and some rescuers think ALL breeders are the root of the problem.
    Sheilah

    Sheila, yes, the US vs THEM mentality that I have seen coming from rescues is ASTOUNDING. I am a licensed vet tech that has a small amount of imported German Warmbloods and I breed 1-2 inspected/approved animals per year. I tried at one time to adopt a Doberman from a rescue (being my favorite breed and trying to adopt rather than buy ), and was not allowed to adopt because I had intact animals on the farm! No intact dogs, but my breeding mares! Not that we just spay mares that aren't used for breeding, but they wouldn't budge, I was an evil breeder.

    Several years ago, I showed interest in a papered mare that was at a rescue. She had been a riding horse, she had an injury, it wasn't treated correctly, and she wound up with a permanent lameness - not pain, just never going to be riding sound again dt scar tissue etc. They were seeking a companion home or funds to euth. Since her injury was not conformational, I thought that seh would be a good broodmare candidate. The rescue opted to euth rather than allow this mare a happy home as a mommy.

    I DO donate to rescues, but unfortunately, the good ones are FAR FAR outweighed by fly-by-night semi-hoarders who are just too wacko to make it in any other aspect of the horse community.
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  14. #14
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    I think the key can be summed up as : if you breed & rescue, the rescues should NEVER come under your personal ownership. Period. If you breed TBs, race and also rescue ... and you find a daughter of Man' O War in New Holland ... You either (a) buy her personally and take care of her on your own dime OR (b) take her into rescue. Rescue is not an excuse to fund your own breeding stock!

    In my opinion, if you are a 501(C)3 then you should have a separate BOD and if you want to apply for one of your rescue's horses I would think they would either have or create a policy to cover that, one that would then be shared as public knowledge.

    Now in my dog rescue, it works the opposite way . Four of my six personal dogs are rescues that stayed .... no one wants them at all so I have given up and made them mine. Because I rescue on my own dime without donations, it wasn't a problem to "pay" for them. I pay all the bills from the same pocket anyway!

    [FYI for those who might ask... adoptions fees are paid directly to the vet; then I pay any additional cost. Our vet allows our rescue dogs to each run a tab until adopted. I don't want anyone to think I am using their funds for my own pets!]
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  15. #15
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    Now, if someone is managing a rescue, I would think that person would, by definition, NOT be a breeder, as that presents a very clear conflict of interest.
    I disagree 100%. Animals end up in need of "rescue" for a wide variety of reasons, and "rescue" animals rarely end up competing for homes against the animals bred and sold by ethical breeders.
    This clearest in the dog world, where many of the rescues are run by breeders, and most breeders are highly active in rescue. It's not uncommon at all for an ethical breeder to be breeding and selling limited quantities of high-quality puppies, while simultaneously fostering and working to place rescued dogs of the same breed.
    I think the idea that "oversupply" due to excess breeding is the cause of animals needing to be rescued is wrong.
    Look around at animals that end up in rescue- if overbreeding was the primary cause, you'd expect most of the animals in need of homes to be very young. They aren't. They are usually older animals who have gone from a breeder to a home, and have been in a home for some period of time, and for some reason their home isn't working out. This isn't a breeder problem, it's a post-breeder problem, a problem with homes not being permanent. It's an ownership responsibility problem.



  16. #16
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    To me, it would totally depend on the circumstance.

    Someone who breeds a limited number of registered foals each year, with an intended purpose/use and careful consideration of things like bloodlines, performance records, and conformation of the parents? If that person also rescues on the side, keeping the breeding business and the rescue financially separate, and not breeding the rescued horses, I don't see an issue.

    Now if someone is breeding in an indiscriminate manner, breeding the horses they are rescuing, using the rescue to support their own breeding program... those things I do not agree with.

    There will always be animals in need of rescue. Even if we cut breeding down to a very minimal level, that does not prevent the reduced number of animals from still falling into the wrong hands. Responsible, limited breeding is necessary to keep up the quality and integrity of the various breeds.



  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoRider View Post
    I know a couple of GSD breeders who are the go-to person in their regions when a GSD needs help. The good, responsible breeders know their breed, know their needs and have a network of people to draw on when a dog needs a home. They are supremely placed to help their chosen breed.

    But...there is a world of difference between those breeders and the idiots with some intact animals, who are breeding indiscriminately. I don't believe people like that should be involved in breeding OR rescuing. They don't have the knowledge base to do either correctly. Their organizational system for either activity is too haphazard and they invariably make both breeders AND rescuers look bad. It doesn't matter if we are talking about dogs, horses or gold fish.

    Rescues need to work well with the good breeders, and good breeders should be encouraged to become involved in rescue. To ignore everything that the good ones can bring to the table is short sighted and does nothing but encourage the Us Vs. Them mentality that so many seem to be comfortable with. Not saying anyone on this particular thread is propagating that Us Vs. Them mentality, but some breeders think rescuers are a bunch of loons trying to outlaw breeding entirely and some rescuers think ALL breeders are the root of the problem.
    Sheilah

    dog breeders seem to have a better handle on the rescue gig. There is hardly a breeder with good standing in the community that does not take in or assist in rehoming animals of their chosen breed.

    And frankly, the majority of rescue people do seem to be loonytoons.
    And most of them do seem to insist that breeders are Teh Evil. (which is BTW not restricted to rescues. Also a select few koolaid slurpers like to bash them, usually with little to no in- or foresight)
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  18. #18
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    We could learn so much from each other, and ultimately the animals would be the beneficiaries of better cooperation. But painting with a really broad brush takes less time and effort than paying attention to the details. And scapegoating works really well for some folks, operating on both sides of the issue.

    I can think of one (mostly) breed specific horse rescue that has gotten their hands officially slapped by Johnny Law for commingling rescue funds with personal funds and business funds. There is a breeding operation, which has integrated horses taken in as rescues into that breeding operation. They also run a supplement business. If I remember correctly, there was a thread here on COTH when the AG released their report.

    I think the vast majority of animals coming through rescues shouldn't be breed. I think the majority of owned animals being bred shouldn't be. Not because I am against breeding in general, but I sure am against breeding poor quality. And lets face it, many animals that are being bred today lack anything special that should recommend them as being worthy of reproducing. There is nothing special about their color, their temperaments, their uses or their bloodlines.

    I think that it is entirely possible for a rescue to gain possession of an animal that is so exceptional it should be bred. It is rare, but possible. In those cases that animal should go to someone that has a proven track record of breeding that type of animal. But the rescue that took in that animal or took in or brokered for other animals from the same source should never be the ones to do the breeding of that animal. Ever.
    Sheilah



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoRider View Post
    We could learn so much from each other, and ultimately the animals would be the beneficiaries of better cooperation. But painting with a really broad brush takes less time and effort than paying attention to the details. And scapegoating works really well for some folks, operating on both sides of the issue.

    I can think of one (mostly) breed specific horse rescue that has gotten their hands officially slapped by Johnny Law for commingling rescue funds with personal funds and business funds. There is a breeding operation, which has integrated horses taken in as rescues into that breeding operation. They also run a supplement business. If I remember correctly, there was a thread here on COTH when the AG released their report.

    I think the vast majority of animals coming through rescues shouldn't be breed. I think the majority of owned animals being bred shouldn't be. Not because I am against breeding in general, but I sure am against breeding poor quality. And lets face it, many animals that are being bred today lack anything special that should recommend them as being worthy of reproducing. There is nothing special about their color, their temperaments, their uses or their bloodlines.

    I think that it is entirely possible for a rescue to gain possession of an animal that is so exceptional it should be bred. It is rare, but possible. In those cases that animal should go to someone that has a proven track record of breeding that type of animal. But the rescue that took in that animal or took in or brokered for other animals from the same source should never be the ones to do the breeding of that animal. Ever.
    Sheilah

    well, if you run the 'rescue' part with money from others, you can't co-mingle.
    If you pay for it out of your own pocket (not counting cases involving involvement from the law and court) you are pretty much free to do as you please.

    One big problem though is the mindset around here that nobody gets to tell you what to do.
    Other countries have a different approach to this. Small farms were essential in providing the army with remount prospect.
    That meant you had to get your mare inspected (approved for breeding as well). The state had first dips on the stallion prospects and private stallion ownership is only about 30 years old in many parts.
    There used to be a government paid position to advise you on what available stallion could be a good cross to your mare.


    but the horses are also a farm asset.
    As such they are on the books.
    And the farm has to show profit at some time.
    Now, the horses can be the deduction element on the books (but you have to show some income from them at some time, or the tax collector will look into it, maybe it's not farm but private hobby)

    But when ever private and business gets thrown together, nothing good can happen.
    I don't care if a breeder runs a rescue.
    But as soon as the rescues enter the breeder's barn, things can get murky.
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  20. #20
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    There's a saying in the dog world... "Those who breed, must rescue."

    I know a lot of reputable breeders in the dog world that are actively involved in rescue. None of them would ever even CONSIDER taking a rescue dog and breeding it. They have spent years and years developing their lines and aren't about to throw an unpapered, unknown dog into the mix. They carefully plan litters based on health temperament and structure and spend thousands of dollars titling their breeding stock. And people think they'll just pick any old dog off the street and breed it? Why bother showing/competing, then? Why not just be a BYB?

    REPUTABLE breeders who do rescue: yes, yes, yes!

    BYB/bad breeders who do rescue: a huge contradiction.



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