MSPCA Seeking Foster Homes for Horses

Following a record number of horses surrendered to the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) at Nevins Farm, additional equines are arriving at an alarming rate as the non-profit absorbs rising costs of care. Recent storms are also impacting the non-profit as the wet weather has already flooded three stalls and threatens to spread to more as available space becomes scarce.

The MSPCA's Equine Center regularly accepts horses from owners struggling to make ends meet. In 2007, the non-profit cared for 21 surrendered horses; however, that number climbed to 70 horses surrendered in 2009. An additional 10 horses have been surrendered in 2010 with seven additional equines scheduled to arrive by April 1, foreshadowing another record breaking year for homeless horses at the farm.

"Many horse owners have been in crisis for some time and they are now realizing that their best efforts to keep their horses are no longer enough," said Melissa Ghareeb, Nevins Farm's barn manager. "Horses are expensive animals to own and we are accepting that burden as we help many of them regain their health and all of them find new homes. While we are caring for an amazing number of horses, we may only be witnessing the beginnings of a much larger problem as more horse owners reach their financial breaking points in unison."

As the number of homeless horses at the MSPCA's Equine Center rises each week so does the cost of daily care. On average the non-profit spent $320 per horse each month in 2009 for daily care, including grain and hay; however, that number has risen to $350 in 2010 as the cost of essentials climb.

The MSPCA is seeking foster care and permanent adoptive homes for the horses in their care. Those interested in adoption or foster care, are asked to contact the MSPCA's Equine Center at 978/687-7453 and enter extension 6113, or e-mail

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