"Love This Horse, Equine Rescue Inc." is a horse rescue specializing in taking in forgotten, neglected and abused Arabian horses from local animal shelters, distressed owners, and from local horse auctions.
We bring them into a safe and nurturing environment, where they are brought back to health are gentled and loved. When the horses are strong enough, they are evaluated by Vera and Isaias, and if possible, restarted for a new life as a riding horse.
We believe that every horse deserves a job. For some of our horses, this means becoming a great trail or lesson horses. Others are destined to become therapy horses, helping kids and adults healing from their own deep wounds. We work hard to take care of these horses, all the while knowing that the horses are
secretly taking care of us.
Our goal is to train all of our rescue horses, so they are rideable. A lot of that training is done on the trail. You almost almost see me riding with two horses. First, we just pony the rescue horse all over the trails, once used to a saddle, the horse is ponied all over the trail with a saddle. Next, once our fantastic trainer Isaias Ocegueda has ridden the horse in the round-pen & arena, the horse is ponied all over the trail with a rider (usually one of my daughters). The final step is to ride the horse on the trail with another companion horse and ultimately on his/her own.
Long before Vera started "Love This Horse", she was busy with another profound rescue operation. After she earned her law degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, she could assist others in adopting children from Haiti, where she also ran an orphanage. She is also the mother of four internationally adopted children. Vera returned to the United States a year after the devastating earthquake in Haiti, after all of her orphaned children had joined their forever families in the U.S., Canada, Europe and South America.
Vera and her children are the daily caregivers of the horses at "Love This Horse", tending to the horses every day, feeding and cleaning stalls in the morning and after school, walking the horses on a lead line, ponying them off the broke horses to build their muscles and trail experience and playing games with them. It's with their daily and constant kindness that the healing begins.
Athena has an unstoppable spirit, determined to rescue as many horses from slaughter as one woman can. She and Vera initially became friends online and later, realizing that they lived in close proximity from one another, became in-person friends with a mission of whole-heartedly raising awareness and funds for horses bound for slaughter. Before she partnered with Vera, Athena's hard work and personal contributions saved (give the number) horses from the kill pens in Texas. "How many lives can we save?" is the question on Athena's mind every day. She does more than just the really hard part--raising money--she and her two daughters also have two beautiful rescue horses of their own.
In the Spring of 2016, Vera saved an Arabian horse, Elahi, from a kill pen in Texas. When he was strong enough she hired a local trainer to help start him under saddle, but this trainer believed Elahi was not "trainable" and said that he was too damaged, too hot-headed and dangerous.
That is when Belinda stepped in, with her expertise in working with Arabians, and within days Elahi would nicker for her when she'd arrive to the stables. Vera allowed Belinda to take her time with this horse and the result was a brave and trusting trail horse. For Vera and Belinda, a great friendship and partnership started. Belinda had also just finished training one of Athena's rescue horses, and thus began the three-women-women quest and dream endeavor: "Love This Horse, Euqine Rescue Inc.".