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The Wild Horse: An Adopter’s Manual

The Foreword to the book written by actress Stephanie Powers

I’ve always been passionately interested in animals and even though some early hopes of becoming a veterinarian vanished as my acting career flourished, I still make a place for animals in my life.

As President of the William Holden Wildlife Foundation, as a member of other organizations dedicated to protecting endangered species, and as a horsewoman, I can truly appreciate what Barbara Eustis-Cross and Nancy Bowker have done to educate and inform prospective adopters about the wild horse.

No matter how many years’ experience we may have with horses, we only know about the domestic horse. The needs of the wild horse are unique in every way. Think for a moment: an animal that has been running free with the herd and foraging in remote places must deal with a totally foreign environment once he is taken from the open range. First he encounters human beings, and then before long a trailer, a barn, a closed-in pasture, the ministrations of vet and farrier….Unless the wild horse can be introduced to his new surroundings gradually and patiently by a knowledgeable owner, the adoption will not be successful.

This excellent book goes a long way toward helping owners make the adoption a success and it also assures them that the scruffy-looking creatures they take home from the BLM Adoption Center will in time make the transition (if not transformation!) to fit, healthy horses that can be trained for anything: ranch work, trail riding, jumping and even driving.

Actually, the book does something else also. It reminds us that not all wild and beautiful animals are continents away.

--Stefanie Powers