I have been around animals and loved them my entire life, thus they became a passion of mine. I found myself rescuing dogs at our family ranch, and I managed to find homes for each one of them. At one point, I had 18! Finding loving homes for neglected and abandoned animals gave me a personal satisfaction of accomplishment, something I wanted to continue to do throughout my life. When I started working in high school, I started donating a percentage of my income to helping animal groups around the world.
When I started my family, I introduced my kids to horses at a young age. We found a nearby horse rescue facility where they started riding. After learning what the facility did for these animals, I had to get involved. I immediately started to volunteer and fundraise for them. I knew there was something I had to do, and after volunteering for this and other rescues for over fives years, I decided to start my own rescue and adoption. My wonderful husband, two daughters and I have four rescue dogs at home and three personal rescue horses. My belief is these animals rely on the open hearts of humans to get them out of the bad situations someone else initiated.
Lizzy and Judy
When I started talking about rescuing horses, I mentioned I wanted to rescue a miniature horse. A friend was at a "kill barn" and saw two of them headed for slaughter and remembered I said something about wanting a "mini." He called me about them, and I bought them both sight unseen. I went to see them and they were in bad shape. How anyone could do this was beyond me! They were both crawling with lice, had green coming out of their eyes and noses, a cough, were malnourished and had slipper feet (their hooves were so long they curled upward). I immediately contacted the vet and the farrier. They were put on medication and were in quarantine. This was when I got to know them. "The Girls", as I call them, are a mother, age 12, and a daughter, age 5. The daughter had never been touched by humans, so she is a major project. I recently lost a second mom to me whose name was Judy. She had a love of horses, so I decided to name the mother in her honor. Lizzy, the daughter, is one feisty little horse, thus her name fits her perfectly. Since their initial rescue, they both have changed drastically - they are healthy, they can walk without pain, they know they are okay and they are loved. Lizzy has taken to a few of the children at the barn and allows them to touch her nose, as well as walk her with a harness and lead rope. They have become the official mascots for Hope for Hooves.
Hope for Hooves is a dream come true and I cannot wait to directly help the equine community by showing what a neglected animal can do when it is cared for and loved. This rescue and adoption facility is a work in progress, but it rewards me everyday and reminds me that this is my calling.
Our founder, Mimi Kuchman