The Woodward News

Local News

July 15, 2014

Wild Horse adoption set July 25, 26

Woodward, Okla. — The first Wild Horse and Burro Adoption in Woodward since 2009 is scheduled July 25 and 26 at the Crystal Beach Stadium.

According to Paul McGuire of the Bureau of Land Management, the two-day event will feature a small pen of yearlings, some adult horses (two-year-olds and over) and a handful of burros.

The event will open on Friday at noon and go until 6 p.m.

On Saturday, the adoption will begin at 8 a.m. and continue until noon at which time the horses who did not find homes will be transported back to the BLM facility near Paul's Valley, McGuire said.

"People here know that they can come and see the horses on the facility in Pauls Valley any time," McGuire said. "But probably people up there should know that every second Tuesday of each month, there is an open adoption event."

The event in Woodward is considered a special adoption, he said.

"Those interested in adopting a horse or burro need to be aware that these animals are wild animals and so working with them will not be like working with a domesticated animal," McGuire said.

According to McGuire, there will not be any trained horses or burros available at the Woodward adoption. Adopters must fill out an application and must have at least 400 square feet for corral space and fencing needs to meet minimum requirements, depending on what kind of animal you are adopting, McGuire said. Trailers must be fully enclosed. That is, no open top trailers will be allowed to haul an animal from the adoption site.

Of special interest at the Woodward adoption are those families who would be interested in adopting an adult horse, McGuire said.

At present, the BLM has a program that offers $500 to those who are willing to adopt an older horse (up to five years old) so the animal can live a productive life as a working or recreational animal, McGuire said.

"These horses are known for their endurance, agility, health and intelligence," McGuire said. "They are trainable and make good recreational animals and working animals."

The $500 adoption incentive is paid after the adopter of the animal has had the animal one year, when adopters receive their official ownership papers, he said.

According to McGuire, adopting a wild horse is a way to keep the iconic symbol of America's western heritage alive in this country, he said.

"The adoption program is enormously important as far as managing the herds to keep them healthy and keep the rangeland healthy too," he said. "By participating in the adoption program, adopters are directly participating in the support of that mission."

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