Guess What? YOU Are The One!

Guess What? YOU Are The One!

27 February 2012

By Ellen Wright, © 2012

            emptystall.jpgYour worst nightmare has happened-you went to the pasture and…your horse(s) isn’t there! Or the barn manager calls and tells you that your trailer is missing-did you come yesterday and take it? You stopped for lunch on the way to a show and somebody took trailer, tack, AND the horses! You leased a horse to somebody you thought would be reliable and, much, much later, you go to pick up the horse only to find that the horse was sold and they don’t have so much as a receipt or bill of sale-or worse-they sold it at auction.

            What do YOU do?

            Can you prove ownership? Just walking up to an animal and telling a law enforcement officer, “Yep, this is MY horse” doesn’t work. They can’t-and won’t-accept that. So do not even think about doing that.

            Having a handful of ancient pictures from a distance of you as a kid with a horse does not go a whole lot of good either. Let’s face facts here, folks-little kids who aren’t your family look like generic little kids to other people. They are pretty cute most of the time, but they look pretty much the same. The same goes for one bay horse compared to another bay horse-yep, looks like another brown horse with a black mane and tail and maybe some white markings. What somebody who isn’t a member of your family AND who isn’t into horses will see is “yep-another fairly cute kid on another brown horse”. It won’t do a thing towards getting YOUR horse home-and that’s the object of the exercise.

            coggins.jpgOkay-so you have your Coggins paperwork.  We’re proud of you. But does that help you? Answer: Not really. WHAT? We know-it is a federal document and you have to have it to cross state lines and for border crossings. There are supposed to be penalties for altering it, using it for more than one animal, forging it, and just all kinds of behaviors. Since when has that EVER stopped the bad guys, folks?[i]

            Bottom line is-YOU are the one who will have to find YOUR OWN HORSE (trailer, tack, etc.), The reality is this-this is a “property crime”-and property crimes are only about 40% solveable-and that’s IF the property is properly documented, identified, and traceable. What does that mean? It means this-

  • It has to have documents that specifically state what the property is (i.e. grey Arabian gelding, five years old, 14 hands 2 inches, scar on right front leg, ……), who owns it (Wiseacre Farm….), etc. 
  • It has to be identified-the horse has a name, a microchip (#98256135) and a freeze brand. Plus, you took pictures of the horse-front, both sides, and back, plus close ups of every swirl and scar. 
  • freezebrandtana.jpgAnd it has to be traceable-the microchip and freeze brand were registered with a third party-such as NetPosse. (There are several others-take your pick!)

             Now, YOU have to get out there and look for YOUR PROPERTY. Law enforcement will help you, sure enough. But you have to face the cold, hard truth-they have other agendas to deal with. What they call “crimes against persons” have a much higher priority than your horses ever will. It isn’t that they don’t care-they do. But they do have limited resources and manpower and they have to allocate them wisely. They cannot allow someone to get shot in a drug deal because they’ve allocated people to go run down leads looking for missing horses. That’s just the way they have to look at things.

   and have come up with a documented protocol that a history of success if it is followed. Please note-because we do not want any confusion-we do not, and never have, “dispatched” searchers/volunteers to help you locate your missing property. What we provide is an international forum for posting information about your missing property for others to pick-up and broadcast for you, links for you to use in possibly locating your property, and information to assist you in your search. We also provide education and some products that can be useful in properly identifying your horse andWHOA_yel.jpg property, documenting ownership, and making it traceable so that you can prove ownership once that property is located.

            Please-do your homework now-before the unthinkable happens. We would prefer that you become supporters and volunteers-and never, ever need our services because this happened to you. Life is too short for this kind of heartbreak. Think of it as insurance-an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure the old ads used to say-and we agree. It’s certainly cheaper and a lot more fun! 

Stolen Horse International provides news and other resources for free on this website. As a charitable organization we survive on the kindness of people like you. Please consider donating to help fund the organization or purchasing a NetPosse ID for your horse, dog or cat to help protect your beloved animals!
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Steve Schmitt


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