Nov 12, 2007
KVOA News 4, Tucson
Today, we visit a place here in Southern Arizona that saves horses from the slaughter house in hopes they can someday roam the fields again.
“I look forward to it. It’s always calm, peaceful.” Joan Marum is a volunteer at the horse rescue ranch known as Equine Voices south of Green Valley.
“Cleaning, clean water tanks, walk the horses that need walks like Chocolate, help with feeding, help with any doctoring if we have a horse that needs a little extra care,” says Marum.
She drives down from Tucson, sometimes even twice a week.
“I’ve always had horses. I grew up with horses, raised with horses, but I haven’t had a horse in about 10 years since I had to put my old man down. And this is a way to be around horses without all the responsibility and expense,” she says.
So instead she adopts these horses. You can too actually. That’s what Equine Voices does. They rescue horses from dire conditions.
“Get their wounds healed, get them fed, good nutrition, and then we try and find them homes,” adds Marum.
All these horses came from Canada just three weeks ago. And had Equine Voices not intervened, they actually would have ended up at the slaughter house. Here we’ve got five pregnant mares and five foals. Typically the horses come from Premarin farms, places where the mares are kept pregnant in small pens so the estrogen in their urine can be collected for hormone replacement drugs like Premarin or Prem-Pro. These hormone replacement drugs are often taken by millions of women every single day. The byproduct of this whole process is usually an old tired mare and an unwanted foal. That’s where the founder of Equine Voices, Karen Pomroy, steps in.
“I do. My mission is the Premarin really. As long as the drug is being produced and the horses are going to slaughter, I’ll be here, God willing. But I get calls everyday for horses that are older, they are not useable anymore, they’re starving,” says Pomroy.
Equine voices mission is two-fold…save these horses and find them homes and at the same time, educate the public about the dangers of Premarin. According to Pomroy, new research has linked Premarin to some forms of cancer in menopausal women.
“My motto is, change can’t happen. Education is the key to change,” she says.
Change isn’t easy, nor is caring for 30 horses at one time on the sanctuary.
But Remember Joan? It takes 150 volunteers just like Joan to keep the ‘no vacancy’ sign out.
“They’re the backbone of the organization. I could not do this without them,” adds Pomroy.
“It’s extremely satisfying. I’d say I’d get a lot more out of this than the horses do. It’s great day,” says Marum.
A great day for Joan, and a horse that lives to see another day.
Equine Voices has a big fundraiser and auction coming up March 8 at the Horse Haven Equine Center off Houghton and Irvington. They are always looking for volunteers. The auction runs from 11:30-3:30.