Caring for Horses Frequently Asked Questions
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I can’t afford to feed my horse, or I can’t afford to keep them. What should I do?,
The Michigan Horse Welfare Coalition has a program that can offer temporary help with hay. They have a hay bank and you can apply for a hardship. The Coalition may also be able to put you in contact with a horse rescue. You can reach the Michigan Horse Welfare Coalition at (517) 321-3683.
There is also a horse rescue in Livingston County called Horses Haven. They may be a good resource if you can no longer afford to keep your horses. Please do not wait until the last minute because it can take time to find a new home for your horse and rescues need ample time to place animals.
What is the minimum care a horse needs? When does it become neglect?,
Please be aware that State of Michigan law does NOT require that horses have a specific shed, barn, or lean-to be provided in the pasture for shelter. By law, a tree line can be considered shelter. Therefore, it is hard for the average person to discern whether horses have adequate shelter. If you are not sure or you are concerned that horses/livestock have no shelter at all and no trees, please call Livingston County Central Dispatch at (517) 546-9111. You must have the address of the residence in question for Animal Control Officers to investigate the complaint.
The State of Michigan Penal Code states that every horse needs to be provided with daily adequate care just like small animals, including: food, potable water, veterinary care, and clean facilities. If you are concerned that horses/livestock do not have land/property for the amount of horses/livestock, you can call the local municipality of the property owner to inquire how many horses they are allowed, or contact Animal Control to investigate.