Denton and Phoenix, a band of brothers!

King, who is now known as Denton, was reunited with his good friend, Phoenix, when he returned to Joel Conner’s ranch after being adopted by Lauren and Bryan Engle!! The two are great friends, and their new parents ADORE them. Here is just a small sample of images stolen from Lauren’s Facebook page!!

July Volunteer of the Month: Samantha Jacobsen

Sam and Stevie

Native Washingtonian Samantha Jacobsen is being recognized by Save a Forgotten Equine (SAFE) horse rescue as July Volunteer of the Month for serving on multiple chore shifts and helping out at special events, most recently at Redmond Derby Days.

Sam has been interested in and involved with horses since childhood. When she was 15, her family moved to Redmond, “where we had about 15 acres and eventually five horses,” she says. “We were there for about 10 years. One of my favorite experiences was when we bred one of our mares. Being a part of the birthing process and then raising the foal was something I will always cherish.”

She discovered SAFE in 2015 while working a a desk job and looking for a volunteer opportunity that involved physical activity. “Luckily, SAFE was the first thing that popped up in my search!”

“I am so proud to be part of this organization,” she says. “I continue to be impressed by the hard work, dedication, devotion and pure love that goes into running SAFE. The people and the horses, of course, keep me coming back. I’ve never felt so good about scooping poop – and knowing that every job contributes to the bigger picture. It’s so rewarding to see, especially with some of our more severe cases, the progress they make not only physically but emotionally as well. Just knowing that the horses know they are now in a safe, loving environment makes me more happy than I can say.” I’m sure this has been said before, but I know that I have benefited tenfold by my experience with SAFE and I plan to be here as long as they will have me.”

Sam says Stevie holds a particularly special place in her heart. He and Lacey (rescued together) were the first complete transformation she witnessed.  “Stevie was so thin, but always so curious and accepting of me when I would muck his stall and paddock. He was like a little puppy. Now, to see both of them so healthy and happy is truly a testament to all the hard work the staff and volunteers have contributed.”

SAFE could not exist without all the many dedicated volunteers like Sam who ensure that SAFE horses have adequate food, water and a clean living environment every day.

Clinic & Photo Update: Jessel

We got a chance to see Jessel recently when Joel brought her along to the June clinic. We were amazed to see how well this youngster is going under saddle — it only goes to show you the value of good foundations and a proper start! She had her moments — testing Joel, or deciding she should be done for the day — but overall she was very pleasant and well-behaved. Jessel is smart, talented, and athletic, and at this stage, she’ll require a trainer or very experienced hand as her adopter. But she is available for adoption!

We also found out recently that with just a little paperwork, a DNA sample, and some money, Jessel can easily be registered with the AQHA.

Here are some lovely shots of her at the clinic:

Clinic & Photo Update: Raven

Raven was such a brave girl for her first groundwork clinic with Joel Conner this past month. Thhe transformation in her was really something to see. Raven is learning to relax and accept new things and find peace and comfort from her handlers. She is beautiful to watch and we are very hopeful for her future! Here is a recap of the clinic from Lisa who is working with Raven:

Raven and I participated in both of the Groundwork sessions of the Joel Conner clinic in June. At the start, Raven was very unsure of being in the arena with all the other horses, of the loudspeakers, and of the spectators. We started out working through some basics just on a lead and she slowly started to settle and hone in on the work.

Up until the clinic, I had introduced Raven to the flag only 3 or 4 times and it she had quite a bit of trouble with it; she would spin around to face me, race backward, even rear up. It was never aggressive behavior, so we simply worked on moving her feet FORWARD to get out of trouble and find a release. She was working through this quite well on our own, but the clinic environment plus the flag were too much and she reverted to her ol’ standby of flying backward. Joel took Raven in hand and, throughout the first morning of the clinic, worked her through, moving her forward, releasing the hindquarters, and helping her find peace with the flag.

On the second morning, Raven was still pretty dubious of the flag, but was settling more and more quickly every time it was reintroduced. Joel also introduced her to some rope work and she did GREAT- leading her with a lariat rope around her neck, barrel, and even letting her feel it on her flanks and rump!

Over the past couple of weeks, we have continued working with the flag and advancing the rope work, including gentle leading by the feet which will help her learn to give to pressure around her legs – a great preparation for successful farrier visits and grooming sessions, but also a safety tool if she were ever to get tangled in anything around her legs! Raven is working VERY well with the flag now and, while she still exhibits some questions when the flag gets “big”, she stays calm and THINKS through the work.

I am just so impressed with this filly; not only is she gorgeous and athletic, but she is a willing partner, a hard worker, and one of the most affectionate young horses I have had the privilege to work with.

Vida is officially a companion horse

Vida comforts Rosie after a rough day
Unfortunately we are going to have to retire Vida as a riding horse. Off and on since we got her, she has had a slight lameness in her front right hoof. It would come and go but recently it was enough for us to call Dr. Fleck to come take a look. He discovered in the x-rays that she has a very old medial lateral collateral injury. Generally these are not something you can see on just an x-ray and in their acute phase require an MRI to diagnose. However her injury is so old and has caused damage for so long that we can see the problem at the attachment point. Due to the years and extended amount of time that this injury has gone untreated, Dr. Fleck did not think it is something we can successfully rehab. So she has been added to our list of available companion horses, and her adoption fee has been set at $300.

Vida is very happy and comfortable as a companion. She enjoys the company of other mares and geldings. She is the leader of her turnout herd and all the other horses look to her for comfort and direction. She is usually easy to handle only having trouble in stressful situations like a vet visit. She ground ties for grooming and is good to trailer and adjust to new places. We are optimistic that a loving home will accept her for what she can offer and give her love and a family to call her own!

Nora at Liberty

You don’t have to ride to enjoy horses! Take a look at Sarah doing liberty work with Nora. This is an incredible way to create a bond with your horse.

SAFE has so many unrideable horses that are waiting for homes! These are horses who have so much to give and so much they can do for you. They will brighten your life as you care for them, spend time with them, even just as you look at them. All they ask for in return is to be loved, fed, and sheltered. If you have room in your life and your heart for a SAFE companion horse, let us know! Friends are waiting!

Nora’s World

Nora has been back at SAFE for several weeks now, and she’s settling in well. She spends her days in a field with Vida, Rosie, and Prince, and her evenings resting in her stall. She’s being re-introduced to good ground manners, and although she’d probably prefer to act like a kite on the end of a leadrope, she is learning how to be good. She’s got a lot of energy, this one!

Handsome Ruger

Thank you, Jessica Farren, for these great shots of Mr Ruger!

Lovely Tasara

Our new friend Tasara got the fashion model treatment from Jessica and her camera. Isn’t she pretty? She’s so petite, and just a love. We are enjoying getting to know her!