The Pegasus Project Newsletter

Allyson DeCanio says goodbye to Sailor

We Owe It To Them!

A safe retirement. EVERY horse owner owes one to his horse. The dumping of older horses is a shameful epidemic in the horse world. We have been meaning to share our thoughts on this subject for a while because it's a problem we encounter far too often. A blog post by a Norwegian horse lover reminded us that there is no time like the present. Please click here to read blogger Matilde Brandt's comments:  Blog Post

To illustrate our point on a personal level, we are sharing the tale of Sailor, a discarded horse who ended up at Pegasus last year. Sailor is just one of many horses we have taken in, having been cast aside due to advanced age, illness or injury. To get a feel for what these horses face, please read Allyson DeCanio's Facebook post from February 2016 below. It speaks for itself. 

"On February 7th, we did something that should not fall to us. We euthanized someone's castaway horse. He deserved better than what he got, but at least he died loved, even if it was by strangers. Far too many horses aren't that fortunate.

"Sailor was estimated to be about 30 years old and came through an Oklahoma kill pen. This gentle soul was obviously dumped after a life of service to his human or humans. He was well-mannered in every way. He easily loaded in the trailer, stood for the farrier and the vet, and complied with our every request. We suspect he had been a nice, big ranch gelding for most of his life. If you listen, horses tell you things, and that's the story he told us.

"Sailor was rescued from the long, inhumane haul to slaughter by the incomparable Kensee Flores Davis. We have no doubt that he would not have survived that horrific journey. Kensee cared for him for a month, trying to nurse his weak and thin body back to health. She gave him everything he needed. Because of her limited space, she asked us to take him to finish his rehab and find him a loving home. He arrived at our ranch Friday afternoon. As soon as he exited the trailer, I knew he had EPM. The stress of the last weeks of his life more than likely triggered the symptoms. By Saturday afternoon, he didn't know where his back feet were. He would spin in circles trying to find his way. It was heart-breaking to watch.

"Our vet came out early this afternoon, and confirmed the desperation of Sailor's condition and quietly laid him to rest on our ranch. This beautiful soul deserved to be loved and cared for by 'his people' until the end of his time, but that didn't happen. Instead, they passed him off. Cast him away like he didn't matter.

"Please let Sailor be a lesson to us all. Provide your horse the permanent home he deserves. Be there for him until his last breath. Because, chances are, he won't be lucky enough to find us after you drop him at the sale."

~Safety Net Program~
Knight is one of the horse helped by our "safety net" program 
As an equine rescue, The Pegasus Project's primary mission has been to save horses, donkeys and mules by removing them from situations of neglect, abuse or abandonment. From its inception, Pegasus has also tried to help horses by helping horse OWNERS in need. We often encounter responsible, loving owners who just need a helping hand. Perhaps their horse was badly injured and they can't afford the surgery. Or perhaps the owner has lost her job and needs temporary assistance with feed and hay costs. Situations such as these potentially qualify for the Pegasus Safety Net Program. 

For the past six years, we provided this assistance from our general operating budget. But in the fall of 2016, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) selected The Pegasus Project as a recipient of a $5000 Safety Net grant, which allows us to expend these grant funds to help owners keep possession of and properly care for their horses. These additional funds from the ASPCA allow us to say "yes" more often. We LOVE that!

Since receiving the grant, Pegasus has been able to provide the following assistance:

1. Vaccines for a mama donkey and her young foal.
2. Treatment of an eye injury for a senior gelding.
3. Castration and vaccines/Coggins for two stud donkeys.
4. Vaccines/Coggins/castration of an Arabian stallion.
5. Leg surgery for a young, injured gelding.
6. Vaccines/Coggins for a teenager's gelding.
7. Euthanasia and burial for a teenager's terminal gelding.
8. Donation of hay and feed for a small herd of horses lacking sufficient forage. 
Before providing assistance, we screen applicants to ensure that they qualify. In order to provide safety net funds, we have to feel that the owners will be able provide their animals with the ongoing care needed to properly sustain them in the future. It is always our wish that deserving owners be allowed to keep their animals. However, if the person's situation, financial or otherwise, does not improve within a reasonable period of time, we are committed to taking whatever measures are necessary to remove the horse from the home to ensure his longterm welfare. To date, our safety net program has been 100% successful, and all horses have remained with their owners. 

If you, or someone you know, is in need of safety net assistance, you may contact Allyson DeCanio for more information on this program. Pegasus sends a huge THANK YOU to the ASPCA for its wonderful support of our mission!

Allyson's email: 

A Note from Allyson
Monthly Donors
The Backbone of Pegasus
When you run a nonprofit, you are grateful for every penny donated regardless of the source. Annual donors, first-time donors, special event sponsors, and people who attend fund raisers are all of high value to us. And we certainly could not operate at our current level without the large gifts we receive from "power donors" such as Gary & Kathie Heidenreich and Kay Bracken.  All this being said, we hold a special place in our hearts for our monthly donors, whom we call "Pegasus Partners."   

Over the past few years, donations from our Pegasus Partners have comprised between 15-20% of our annual revenue. In 2016, Pegasus Partners contributed almost $50,000 to this mission, all from monthly donations ranging from $10/month to $400/month. Our current list of Pegasus Partners is 102 donors, many of whom have been with Pegasus from the beginning! 

We realize that most people cannot afford to be "power donors." But there is amazing strength in numbers. When 50 people give $25/month, Pegasus just bought a bunch of horse feed! 

If you are currently one of our Pegasus Partners, we thank you, and we encourage you to think about increasing your donation if you can. If you are not a monthly donor, please consider becoming one. Your monthly gift allows us to plan ahead and help even more horses than ever before. 

It's easy to become a monthly donor. Have your bank issue an automatic check from your account every month and mail to The Pegasus Project, PO Box 26, Ben Wheeler, TX 75754. Or click the following link and set up your monthly payments through PayPal:

We'd like to honor and recognize our current monthly donors by sharing the list with all of you. We cannot thank our Pegasus Partners enough. You are our village! Much love and Happy New Year!

Allyson DeCanio
President, The Pegasus Project

Send inquiries to:

January 19 - Pegasus Partner Happy Hour

January 22 - Open House

March 2017 (dates to be determined) - Bruce Logan Clinic

April 22 - Wings Over Pegasus 

April 28 thru 30 - Mark Rashid/Crissi McDonald Clinic


Thursday, January 19th
5:30 pm
The Forge
Ben Wheeler, Texas

Monthly, fun,  information-packed meetings for  Pegasus supporters at various locations throughout the year. All Pegasus Partners at the $25/month level and higher are Happy Hour members. Membership includes a car decal, a Pegasus hat or t-shirt, a Pegasus logo wine glass and an open invitation  to every meeting!  Discuss the latest Pegasus news and connect with other like-minded horse fans. (Your wine glass is free, but the wine isn't! We know how much you drink!)

  Click here to join:  

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