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Special News Release March 19, 2020


The following is from the American Horse Council:

Special News Release  

AHC responds to pandemic by compiling resources to help equine industry

Human Health, Equine Health & Business Health

Click here for a link to our COVID-19 Resources

Federal Policymakers Outline Massive Stimulus Package to Assist Business, Individual Taxpayers

With the Senate having been recalled this week from a scheduled recess, lawmakers and Administration officials are discussing the outlines of an $850 billion stimulus package to address economic disruptions caused by COVID-19.   The package, which will need support from House Democrats, may include $50 billion in direct assistance to the airline industry, $500 billion in direct cash payments to individual taxpayers, and $250 billion in loans for small business.   Because a large percentage of equine businesses file tax returns as S-Corporations or “pass through” entities, the small business loans could be especially helpful for many members of the horse industry moving forward.  With respect to the half-trillion dollars in direct payments to individual taxpayers, the Administration states that it would seek to disburse the payments in two portions including a $250 billion installment that could be available as soon as early April.  Stay tuned for details related to stimulus, and possible benefits for large segments of the horse industry, as lawmakers turn their attention to legislation intended to blunt the impact of COVID-19.

Economic Impact of COVID-19 on

Equine Industry to be collected

Dozens of equine events have been cancelled or postponed around the world amid an outbreak of a new type of coronavirus. The pathogen’s effect has been felt across a range of industries. To be proactive, we’d like to suggest that the equine industry begin to think about quantifying our losses. Just like the airline industry, the hospitality industry, and other sporting industries we need to gather data that will help us convey our message.The American Horse Council will be conducting a survey to obtain qualitative and quantitative data to help us paint this picture – in the meantime we ask that you start collecting and noting the impacts this pandemic is having on your equine business. And please feel free to reach out to us at 202-296-4031 or email info@horsecouncil.org
Be safe & Be well.


The AHC News is provided to you as a benefit of your AHC membership. We hope you find the articles informative and useful.

While the AHC does grant permission for newsletter articles to be passed on, we hope you will encourage those you are sharing the articles and information with to join the AHC so they can stay informed and up-to-date!

Permission to pass on the AHC News articles to your members, readers, or others is granted on the condition that it is forwarded in its original form or directly linked with the AHC logo and a link to the AHC website.

About the American Horse Council

As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. Organized in 1969, the AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day. 

The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen’s associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.


Our work to defend America’s wild horses and burros continues


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

We hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe and well during this difficult time.

Like you, we are doing our best to stay up to date on the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and also wanted to take this opportunity to share with you a number of developments about our continued work during this time as we take necessary precautions in advocating for our nation’s wild horses and burros.

A Victory For The Salt River Wild Horses In Arizona

This past weekend, we reached out to you about the legislation introduced by AZ Rep. Kelly Townsend. HR 2858 threatened to block lifesaving humane management of the famed Salt River wild horses and was widely opposed not just in Arizona, but also by tens of thousands of Americans all across the country.

Due to concerns over COVID-19, the public was discouraged from attending committee hearings or providing public testimony on legislation. Townsend had publicly stated that her legislation was on hold, only to schedule the unpopular and controversial bill at the last minute for a Monday hearing when the public couldn’t attend.

More than 8,000 of you messaged Townsend and members of the committee to cancel this hearing in a tremendous, last-minute show of force in defense of the Salt River wild horses.

And … good news! The state legislature will only be addressing essential legislation before adjourning at the end of the week, meaning that this dangerous and controversial bill is effectively dead (but we will be carefully monitoring this until the session is officially over to be certain).

Our Work In Congress and On Capitol Hill Continues

As the country faces both a financial and public health crisis, imaginably, this past week was one of the most consequential in Washington, DC in many years.

Most federal agencies, including the Bureau of Land Management, have moved all but the most essential personnel to telework and Congress is doing the same.

This doesn’t, however, put a stop to the legislative work happening in Congress nor will it delay consideration for millions of dollars in additional funding to ramp up the roundup, removal, and potential sterilization of tens of thousands of wild horses in the West.

In fact, Congress’ biggest legislative vehicles, the Fiscal Year 2021 appropriation bills which fund federal agencies and their programs, are currently being drafted with the goal of concluding in the next four to five weeks. We’ve previously highlighted the President’s FY 2021 budget, which asks Congress to throw even more money at the BLM’s broken and inhumane wild horse and burro program (you can read more about it below).

Our fear is that the current appropriations bills will become “must-pass” legislation tied to addressing COVID-19 and the financial crisis, meaning that language and funding that threatens wild horses may slip through as the public focuses on other issues.

That’s why our team was on Capitol Hill last week meeting with Congressional staff in order to have early and influential input on this process in defense of wild horses and burros. Now that Congressional staff, as well as many of our own staff, are working remotely, we’re utilizing every technology available to stay in contact throughout the appropriations process.

The AWHC Legal Team Takes New Steps To Defend Wild Horses In Court

Just as our work in Congress continues, so too, does our work throughout the court system.

Last week, the government filed a motion in our lawsuit against the BLM to stop its proposed ovariectomy via colpotomy experiments on wild mares. Oral arguments are set for March 20th in Portland, Oregon, which has declared a state of emergency.

As a result we will be attending the hearing and providing oral arguments via telephone. This suit is critically important — We partnered with The Cloud Foundation and The Animal Welfare Institute on this suit which is responsible for the BLM decision to abandon its plans to conduct cruel sterilization experiments.

Five days later, on March 25th, our legal team was expected to appear in San Francisco for oral arguments before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in our lawsuit challenging the BLM’s plan to castrate wild-free roaming stallions in Nevada’s Triple B Complex.

We recently got word that the Courts will be canceling oral arguments for that week meaning that we will either have our hearing rescheduled or the case will be decided on the written briefs submitted previously.

Late last week, AWHC Government Relations and Policy Counsel filed a lawsuit over the BLM’s failure to respond to multiple requests under the Freedom of Information Act, seeking information on various aspects of BLM wild horse and burro policy.

We are seeking records related to a number of secretive meetings between Interior secretaries and BLM officials with livestock special interest groups that may have influenced federal wild horse and burro policy. By failing to provide these records, the BLM and Interior Department have violated the law — So we’re taking action.

Hard At Work: Service Is Uninterrupted At The World’s Largest Wild Horse Fertility Control Program

The great outdoors is, fortunately, one of the safest places to be during this pandemic. That means that our team’s incredible work running the world’s largest wild horse fertility control program on the Virginia Range in Nevada continues on.

Last year, with far fewer resources and staff, our volunteer team of darters outperformed the BLM in providing the birth control vaccine PZP to wild mares — shattering expectations and proving the naysayers wrong.

Each day, we’re proving that there is a better, humane, and far more cost effective way to manage wild horse populations. And each vaccine costs just $30.

Our work continues and we’re so grateful to have your support along the way. Please stay healthy, stay strong, stay safe and stay tuned. We’re all in this together!

American Wild Horse Campaign


Tell Your Senators to Co-Sponsor the PAST Act!


The following is from the American Horse Council:

American Horse Council Action Alert

Tell Your Senators to Push PAST Act Over the Finish Line!

Overwhelming passage of the PAST Act in the House of Representatives last year gives the bill unprecedented momentum for action in the Senate. Please help us gain a “super-majority” of cosponsors for the senate version of the PAST Act (S. 1007), championed by Sens. Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Mark Warner (D-VA). Write to your senators today and urge them to join the growing list of bi-partisan cosponsors of this important legislation.

Take Action


We need your help to save the famed Salt River wild horses


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

News & Alerts

If you thought the famed Salt River wild horses were protected, think again. In 2017, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed legislation that protects the Salt River wild horses in their historic habitat in the Tonto National Forest near Phoenix.

But now this cherished herd is threatened by new plans that could result in severe habitat loss and removals of these horses from their home along the lower Salt River.

The Issue: The U.S. Forest Service is beginning construction of a metal fence along the last four miles of the Lower Salt River, including across the river itself. The fence would trap horses on either side, blocking access to the river – a critical source of hydration — and to grazing grounds on both sides of the river.

At the same time, the Arizona Department of Agriculture is considering several proposed long-term management plans for the horses. Depending on which plan is chosen, the horses could face large-scale removals and a severe reduction in their habitat.

The Stakes: Working together with our coalition partner the Salt River Wild Horse Management Group, we saved the Salt River wild horses from a mass roundup/eradication plan almost 5 years ago. Now the future of this iconic herd is again in jeopardy and their future is far from assured!

Five Things You Can Do Today:

The Salt River wild horses need your voice now! Click on the image for each step and you will be directed to a page that will guide you on how to help.

Thank you,

American Wild Horse Campaign


a couple of crucial developments in the fight to defend wild horses (please read)


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

News & Alerts

Acting BLM Director William Perry Pendley’s recent declaration of wild horses as the top existential threat to public lands (even though wild horses aren’t on 88% of BLM land!) and his claim that it will cost $5 billion to “solve” the wild horse “problem” is the culmination of a years-long propaganda war against mustangs and burros.

The war is being waged by the commercial livestock industry, which seeks virtual eradication of these cherished animals in order to maximize taxpayer-subsidized grazing of privately-owned cattle and sheep on public lands.

This anti-mustang propaganda war was boosted recently with the capitulation of the Humane Society of the U.S., ASPCA and Return to Freedom to the cattlemen’s mass mustang roundup agenda.

With that in mind, your team at AWHC has been fighting back hard — from the battleground of Nevada to the seat of power in Washington DC — and we want to share some of our most recent work with you today.

Fighting Back at Ground Zero in the Wild Horse War: Nevada

On October 23, we organized a high-profile press conference with Nevada business leaders and a leading conservationist to counter the anti-wild horse messaging at a screening later that evening of the propaganda film “Horse Rich Dirt Poor.”

Well known real estate developer and Storey County Commissioner Lance Gilman and Erik Molvar, Executive Director of the Western Watersheds Campaign, struck back forcefully against the scapegoating of wild horses and in favor of protecting these iconic animals on public lands in the West. Read more about this highly successful event here.

Defending Wild Horses & Burros in Washington, DC

AWHC teamed up with our colleagues at Animal Wellness Action and The Cloud Foundation to hold a briefing on Capitol Hill for Congressional staff to discuss the mass roundup plan and its true cost to American taxpayers and the wild horses and burros we cherish. In one of the most successful Hill briefings ever, 35 staffers showed up to learn more about this issue that is obviously of concern to so many of their constituents. You can read more about this event here.

At the same time and a few miles away, the BLM Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board was meeting — with AWHC staff in attendance to ensure that your voices were represented and heard.

Throughout the meeting, BLM officials and most advisory board members expressed their utter disdain for public opinion, which they dismissed as being “emotional” and “uneducated.” It’s clear where the public stands on the mass roundup and surgical sterilization plan, as our most recent polling documents. At the meeting, we made sure that the voice of the people was not ignored.

Read more about the board meeting here.

Fighting to Keep Wild Horses Wild

While we’re battling on the national front, AWHC is investing significant resources to protect locally cherished herds and support humane management programs.

From the Virginia Range — where our darters have delivered more fertility control treatments to wild horses in six months than the entire BLM did last year — to the Onaqui Mountains in Utah, where we’re helping the BLM and the Wild Horses of America Foundation expand an existing fertility control program, to the Salt River in Arizona where we work closely with the Salt River Wild Horse Management Group, we’re working every day to keep wild horses wild and prove that humane management work.

You won’t want to miss our latest updates from the field here.

We Couldn’t Do This Work Without You!

Our mustangs and burros don’t have a voice — Which is why we’re using ours. If just 5% of you donate to this email, we could clear our monthly fundraising goal and show the BLM that the public proudly supports this important work to keep wild horses and burros wild and free!

From all of us here at AWHC — Thank you for taking the time to read this and thank you for supporting our work.

American Wild Horse Campaign Team



Wild horses betrayed…but the fight goes on!


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

I have devastating news. The Humane Society of the United States, ASPCA, and Return to Freedom, who made promises to protect horses, just betrayed America’s mustangs and burros.

Today, at the behest of those organizations and the livestock industry lobbyists they allied with, the Senate Appropriations Committee funded a $35 million increase for the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program. The appropriation is part of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 Interior Department spending bill unveiled today.

The funds are targeted for implementation of the unprecedented mass roundup, removal, and radical population suppression plan that the groups, along with the cattlemen, support.

We’re ready to fight back.

There are no restrictions on how the BLM can spend the new money. With this nearly 50% increase in the program budget, it’s clear what the BLM will do. Thousands more wild horses will be rounded up with helicopters, ripping them from their families and homes on our public lands. Those who remain free will be subjected to brutal sterilization surgeries that will destroy their wild behaviors and threaten their very lives. The future of America’s wild free-roaming herds will be in jeopardy when populations are reduced to genetically non-viable levels.

Don’t be fooled by the deceptive promotion of the plan as “non-lethal.” The bill language prohibits slaughter for a year, but the plan makes that horrific outcome more likely as holding pens swell with tens of thousands more horses and no guarantee of funding for their safety or long-term care.

But don’t despair. This is a setback, but not the end of the battle.

There’s a long process ahead before this becomes law – if it ever does. Congress may choose to fund the government in FY 20 by passing a Continuing Resolution instead of a spending bill. And the BLM will have many hurdles to cross before accelerating the roundups and implementing inhumane management tools.

That means this fight goes on.

With your continued support, we will fight those who betray our wild horses and burros. We’ll fight them in court. We’ll fight them in Congress. We’ll expose the backroom deal that sold out our mustangs. We won’t rest. With your continued support, we won’t stop until our mustangs are safe.

In Freedom,

Suzanne Roy, Executive Director


Red Alert: Call the Senate Now


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

There’s a lot at stake for wild horses and burros this week on Capitol Hill. The Senate will unveil its Fiscal Year 2020 Interior Appropriations bill at a subcommittee hearing tomorrow and a full committee hearing on Thursday.

That means this is the last day to oppose funding for the dangerous cattlemen’s plan that will destroy America’s wild free-roaming herds.

If you do nothing else today, please pick up the phone now to contact the key Senators below. Tell them:

“Hello. I’m calling to ask the Senator to oppose funding in FY20 Appropriations for the cattlemen’s plan for America’s wild horses and burros. I don’t want my tax dollars spent on mass roundups that will lead to eventual slaughter or on cruel sterilization surgeries. Please don’t throw more money at a failed program that has shown no ability to reform. Thank you.”

  • Senator Lisa Murkowski, (202) 224-6665 or (907) 271-3735
  • Senator Tom Udall, (202) 224-6621 or (505) 346-6791
  • Senator Susan Collins, (202) 224-2523 or (207) 780-3575
  • Senator Lindsay Graham, (202) 224-5972 or (803) 933-0112
  • Senator Marco Rubio, (202) 224-304, (305) 596-4224
  • Senator Patrick Leahy, (202) 224-4242 or (802) 863-2525
  • Senator Dianne Feinstein, (202) 224-3841 or (415) 393-0707
  • Senator Jeff Merkley, (202) 224-3753 or (503) 326-3386
  • Senator Chris VanHollen, (202) 224-4654 or (667) 212-4610
  • Senator Jack Reed, (202) 224-4642 or (401) 528-5200

After you make the call, please take one moment to send this automated tweet.

We must amplify our voices now! There’s too much at stake not to act. 

Thank you for speaking up for America’s wild horses!

Suzanne Roy, Executive Director


Help us secure the future for wild horses.


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

There’s a lot at stake for wild horses in Washington this week as the Senate unveils its FY2020 Interior Appropriations bill at a subcommittee hearing tomorrow. The legislation could have huge ramifications for mustangs and burros.

The bill could include funding to implement the dangerous cattlemen’s plan for our wild horses, which includes accelerated roundups, cruel surgical sterilization, and tripling the number of horses in holding — making slaughter more likely in the long run. If the bill doesn’t prohibit the Forest Service from selling horses for slaughter, all wild horses under Forest Service jurisdiction, including California’s Devil’s Garden mustangs, will be at grave risk.

If the Senate funds this devastating proposal, we’ll need to escalate the fight over the next months and beyond.

Here’s what American Wild Horse Campaign is doing to defend wild horses.

We lobby. On the Hill, our experienced legislative team is fighting every day to convince legislators to secure real and humane solutions that protect these national icons.

We lead grassroots campaigns to make sure your voices are heard. In 2017, we beat back the existential threat of mass slaughter. With your support, we’ll prevail again.

We defend in the courtroom. Our lawsuits have defeated rancher attempts to force mass roundups and BLM plans to eradicate wild horses from designated habitat. We’re currently in court simultaneously fighting the Forest Service’s slaughter plans and the BLM’s plans to perform barbaric sterilization surgeries on wild mares.

We can keep this vital work going – but only with your help. The lives of tens of thousands of mustangs and burros depend on your support.

Thank you for your steadfast support for AWHC and our beloved mustangs and burros

Suzanne Roy, Executive Director



Idaho Mustangs at Risk and More News


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

News & Alerts


BLM Plan Could Destroy Idaho Wild Horse Herd – Take Action!

The BLM is accepting public comments on a Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) that will affect a small herd of wild horses living in the Four Mile Herd Management Area in southwestern Idaho, near the Oregon border for the next 10-20 years. Among the management options under consideration for wild horses in the Four Mile mustangs are surgical removal of ovaries in mares and castration of stallions, vasectomy, PZP, GonaCon, skewed sex ratios, and the creation of non-reproducing herds. Now is the time to weigh in for humane and proven management options like PZP fertility control, and rejection of dangerous methods, like surgical sterilization and sex-ratio skewing, that will destroy the horses’ wild free roaming behaviors and social organization. Please take one moment to take action below.


BLM Roundup Reports: Utah, Nevada and California

The BLM is well into its summer/fall roundup season, aiming to remove 3,565 federally-protected wild horses from public lands through the fall. This month has seen three roundups conducted simultaneously in three different states — including one targeting the nation’s most high profile wild horse herd. AWHC has been onsite at all three roundups and you can read our reports from the field by clicking below.


Wild Horse Week in Washington a Success!

Thanks to all the members of our herd who galloped to action last week to let the Senate know that the so-called Path Forward for wild horses — being pushed by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, ASPCA, HSUS and Return to Freedom — will be a giant step back for these cherished national icons. Together we made our position known, loud and clear. Read more about the successful mini campaign below!


Video Highlight of the Week: Salt River Wild Horse Management Group



Tell Your Senators to Co-Sponsor the PAST Act!


The following is from the American Horse Council:

Tell Your Senators to Make History! Push PAST Act Over the Finish Line!

Before breaking for the August recess, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted the Sen. Joseph Tydings Memorial Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act of 2019 (H.R. 693) by a vote of 333 to 96.  In the wake of this historic vote, the horse industry is focusing efforts on the Senate, where there is an opportunity to gain a “super-majority” of cosponsors for the senate version of the bill (S. 1007), championed by Sens. Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Mark Warner (D-VA).  During August, AHC members sent 200 letters to the Senate urging support for this important bill.  You can put even more horsepower in the PAST Act by sending a letter to your senators today!

Take Action

Action required: Wild horses on brink of destruction


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

Right now, the Senate is considering partial funding for a plan that, if approved, could mean the beginning of the end for free-roaming horses and burros. The plan, ill-conceived and full of dangerously vague language, is hidden within the Interior budget bill and it’s on track to be negotiated in September.

Take action now: Sign our petition to protect America’s wild horses and burros.

What is this plan? It’s a ten year attack on wild horse populations, and nothing short of a surrender of the decades-long fight for fair treatment, humane management, and preservation of our nation’s wild horse and burro herds.

The plan is billed as a compromise between the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, other livestock lobbying groups, and the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS), the ASPCA and Return to Freedom, but there’s nothing in it for wild horses.

In fact, it calls for the roundup of 130,000 wild horses and burros over the next decade – more than exist today on the range. This will triple the number of wild horses and burros incarcerated at taxpayer expense, at a cost of close to $1 billion over the next decade, without any guarantee of long-term funding to ensure safety from slaughter for these cherished animals.

And there’s more. Herd numbers will diminish beyond minimum viable populations, gruesome sterilization experiments for wild mares will remain on the table, and herds left on public lands will be manipulated with unnatural sex ratios that will wreak havoc on social organization and dynamics.

We’ve seen the power Americans have to affect change at a national level. We must band together to demand an absolute NO to this disastrous plan.

Take action now, and sign our petition to make sure your Senators vote against this dangerous proposal.

Thank you,

– AWHC Team


Tell Your Senators to Co-Sponsor the PAST Act!


The following is from the American Horse Council:

American Horse Council Action Alert

Tell Your Senators to Make History! Push PAST Act Over the Finish Line!

Before breaking for the August recess, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted the Sen. Joseph Tydings Memorial Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act of 2019 (H.R. 693) by a vote of 333 to 96.  In the wake of this historic vote, the horse industry is focusing efforts on the Senate, where there is an opportunity to gain a “super-majority” of cosponsors for the senate version of the bill (S. 1007), championed by Sens. Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Mark Warner (D-VA).

Take Action


VSV – CDA Warns against Misinformation- 8-16-2019


The following is from the Colorado Horse Council:

August 16, 2019

Colorado Department of Agriculture warns against vesicular stomatitis misinformation

Stay informed!


For information all equine diseases

Equine Disease Communication Center

Great information on all equine health notices and needs.

Don’t leave home with your horse until you have

 check this site out!


Stay informed and help us protect your rights as Horse Owners
Join or Renew your Colorado Horse Council membership online today!


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August 16, 2019

Veterinarians and Livestock Owners Contact:  Colorado State Veterinarian’s Office, 303-869-9130

Media Contact:  Mary Peck, 303-869-9005, mary.peck@state.co.us


Broomfield, Colo. – As Colorado’s livestock communities continue to manage a significant vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) outbreak affecting 20 counties across the state, misinformation about the virus is being shared on social media channels and traditional media outlets. The initial source of the inaccurate reporting, comparing VSV to a “rabies-like” virus, was an  Associated Press article that was reposted by a number of media outlets. The article has since been corrected.

“It is highly misleading to say that vesicular stomatitis virus is a rabies-like virus.  Both viruses belong to the same family, Rhabdoviridae, but that classification is based on viral structure alone,” said Maggie Baldwin, Epidemiology Traceability Veterinarian for the Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA).”The two diseases have no similarities in transmission, clinical signs, or outcome.”

VSV is a virus from the genus Vesiculovirus. VSV is a viral disease that causes blisters and ulcers on the mouth, feet, ears, and udder of cattle, horses, and swine, and occasionally mules, donkeys, sheep, goats, llamas, and alpacas. The rabies virus is from the genus Lyssavirus.  Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system of mammals and has an extremely high case fatality rate.

VSV is not considered a highly contagious virus, as it is spread primarily through insect vectors, and rarely through saliva or other contact. Please refer to the CDA VSV website for accurate information and resources.

CDA has confirmed cases of VSV in Adams, Alamosa, Arapahoe, Archuleta, Boulder, Broomfield, Conejos, Delta, Douglas, Gilpin, Grand, Jefferson, La Plata, Larimer, Mesa, Mineral, Montezuma, Montrose, Morgan, Ouray, Pueblo, and Weld counties.

ALL VSV cases are important for the epidemiology and management of this outbreak and MUST be reported to the State Veterinarian’s Office at 303-869-9130, regardless if the owner and veterinarian decide to have their livestock tested or choose to manage as positive premises based on the presence of typical clinical signs without testing.The only cases that may be managed as suspect positive are equine cases located in counties that have confirmed cases.

Equine owners and livestock producers across the state are impacted by VSV; all livestock owners should carefully watch the case numbers and affected counties to gauge their level of risk and institute mitigation measures.

The total count of premises under quarantine for VSV by county is outlined in the table below.  CDA’s Animal Health division is updating this table regularly with the latest data on its CDA VSV website.


Please see the USDA APHIS Veterinary Services website to read the current situation report for all confirmed cases in the U.S.

The first case of VSV in Colorado was reported on July 3rd in Weld County by a field veterinarian from the State Veterinarian’s Office at the Colorado Department of Agriculture.  An incursion of VSV-infected insect vectors is the likely source of infection. There are no USDA approved vaccines for VSV.

Vesicular Stomatitis Background
Vesicular stomatitis is a viral disease that primarily affects horses and cattle but occasionally swine, sheep, goats, llamas, and alpacas will show clinical signs. The transmission process of VSV is not completely understood, but includes insect vectors such as black flies, sand flies, and biting midges.

The incubation period ranges from 2-8 days. Clinical signs include vesicles, erosions, and sloughing of the skin on the muzzle, tongue, ears, teats, and coronary bands. Often excessive salivation is the first sign of disease, along with a reluctance to eat or drink. Lameness and weight loss may follow.

Humans may become infected when handling affected animals, but this is a rare event.  To avoid human exposure, individuals should use personal protective measures when handling affected animals.

Tips for Livestock Owners

  • Strict fly control is an important factor to inhibit the transmission of the disease.
  • Avoid transferring feeding equipment, cleaning tools or health care equipment from other herds.
  • Colorado veterinarians and livestock owners should contact the state of destination when moving livestock interstate to ensure that all import requirements are met. Contact information for all state veterinarian offices is listed here.
  • Colorado fairs, livestock exhibitions, and rodeos may institute new entry requirements based on the extent and severity of the current VS outbreak. Certificates of veterinary inspection (CVIs or health certificates) issued within 2-5 days prior to an event can be beneficial in reducing risks. Be sure to stay informed of any new livestock event requirements. See the Vesicular Stomatitis Guidelines for Shows and Fairs.


Important Points for Veterinarians and Horse Owners

Any vesicular disease of livestock is reportable to the State Veterinarian’s Office in Colorado – to report call 303-869-9130. If after hours, the voice message will indicate which staff veterinarian on call.


Additional resources

Ranchers call for a roundup of wild horses on our public lands. Don’t let the cattle industry win


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

Earlier this week, a federal court judge in California issued an order granting us the right to intervene in a lawsuit, filed by public lands ranchers, seeking the immediate round up and removal of 2,000 wild horses from the Devil’s Garden Wild Horse Territory in the Modoc National Forest.

At the same time, our attorney is in San Francisco today, participating in court-ordered negotiations with the U.S. Forest Service on a separate lawsuit, filed by AWHC and the Animal Legal Defense Fund, to stop the agency from selling Devil’s Garden horses for slaughter.

Please, support our ongoing legal efforts to protect the Devil’s Garden wild horses in California from special interests that seek their mass removal and slaughter.

The Devil’s Garden Territory is home to one of California’s largest remaining wild horse populations. Yet under pressure from local ranching interests, the Forest Service seeks to reduce the wild horse population to 200 – 402 horses, while allowing over 3,700 cows and 2,900 sheep to graze the public lands there.

The situation that has been unfolding in Devil’s Garden — from the roundups to the proposal to sell the mustangs without limitation on slaughter — represents one of the more serious attacks on wild horses by the public lands ranching industry.

Enough is enough. We’re waging two separate legal battles to defend Devil’s Garden mustangs from this existential threat.

Please help us fund this crucial fight today. Your donation will be earmarked for the legal efforts to protect the right of the Devil’s Garden wild horses to live wild and free on our public lands.

As always, we are the last line of defense for America’s wild horses and we must keep fighting until their safety is assured.

—AWHC Team


There’s no recess for wild horses… and more news


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

News & Alerts

Photo by Kimerlee Curyl

No Recess for Wild Horses – Take Action!

Where does your member of Congress stand on protecting wild horses? If you don’t know, now’s the time to find out. And if they’re supporting mass roundups and sterilization, it’s the time to change their minds. Your Representative and Senators are back home for the August recess and will be holding town halls and taking meetings – so now’s your chance to speak up for our wild horses and burros! Learn how at the link below. 


Response to Alta Magazine’s, “Feral Horses, Fierce Controversy”

Our wild horses and burros are often the subjects of inaccurate, misleading, agenda-driven reporting. A recent example is Jason G. Goldman’s “Feral Horse, Fierce Controversy” that was published in the July issue of Alta, a magazine that promises “a celebration and examination of all things about California.”  If you shopped at Whole Foods in California this summer, you will have likely seen this cover story on the magazine prominently displayed in the check-out lines.  It’s a biased, sensationalized piece far below the journalistic standards that Alta says it aspires to. Read our response below.


U.S. Forest Service Seeks to Weaken Environmental Review Regs. and Limit Public Comment

The U.S. Forest Service is proposing rules that will significantly weaken its regulations under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) which requires federal agencies to assess the environmental effects of proposed actions prior to making decisions. The Forest Service proposed rules would limit the opportunity for public input and make it easier for the agency to make decisions on proposed actions, like wild horse roundups, without analyzing the environmental impacts. Please read more and weigh in against the proposed rule change by clicking below.


Video Highlight of the Week: Issue Overview


Speak up for Utah’s wild horses and more news


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

News & Alerts


Take Action for Utah’s Wild Horses in the Range Creek HMA

The BLM is seeking public comments on a roundup and removal plan for the wild horses that live in the Range Creek HMA in Utah. The HMA includes 55,000 acres of public and private lands, on which the BLM has set a wild horse population limit (AML) of just 75-125 wild horses. The agency seeks to remove over 200 horses and reduce the population to the low AML of 75, a density of one horse per 733 acres! The BLM’s plan also includes the implementation of fertility control, including the use of unproven IUD’s, and the skewing of wild horse sex ratios to favor of males. Please weigh in today against yet another roundup and urge the BLM instead to implement proven humane and sustainable wild horse management tools.


BLM Reorganization Will Have Major Impact on Public Lands and Wild Horses 

A massive reorganization of the BLM that involves moving its headquarters to Grand Junction, CO and transferring most of its Washington, D.C. staff out west — combined with the Administration’s installment of a lawyer who advocates for the sell-off of federal lands in the top agency post — is raising concerns about the future of our public lands and the agency tasked with managing and conserving them. The developments forbode further dysfunction within the BLM, increased control by local and corporate interests over federal public lands policy, and a growing threat to the environment and wild horses and burros. Read more below.


New Census Shows Devil’s Garden Mustang Population Half the Size Claimed by Ranchers

On Tuesday, the U.S. Forest Service announced its plan to conduct another roundup of California wild horses from the Devil’s Garden Wild Horse Territory in the Modoc National Forest. At the same time, the agency released new census numbers showing far fewer mustangs actually live in the Forest than previously claimed by the ranching interests that have waged a propaganda campaign against the horses. The ultimate goal is the removal of most of these cherished California mustangs from the public lands that comprise the Modoc Forest. Read more below. 


Video Highlight of the Week: The Rescue of the ‘Oklahoma 6’


Our next deadline


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

Here’s your latest wild horse status report.

With the dust barely settled after the Triple B roundup last week, we’re headed to the Pine Nut wild horse roundup in Nevada on Monday.

As I write this, tens of thousands of wild horses stand in government holding facilities, and we wait with bated breath for the BLM’s decision on whether or not it will proceed with gruesome sterilization experiments on wild mares.

With tactical lawsuits, advocacy on the Hill, implementation of humane fertility control, and documentation in the wild, we continue with crucial actions to make roundups a thing of the past. That’s why, last week, we extended our fundraising goal to $100,000 to fight these cruel stampedes.

Your donation today will help us gear up for the next fights to protect wild horses on Monday – and save more of these beautiful creatures from suffering the same cruel fate we’re witnessing now.

Here are some of the actions we take to end roundups:

  • With field representation and filmmakers on the ground at each roundup, we’re gathering footage for educational videos to share with the public and lawmakers.
  • On Capitol Hill, our legal team is educating key members of Congress to combat a dangerous plan to round up and remove up to 130,000 wild horses over the next 10 years. (That’s more than exist on the range today.)
  • With litigation funding, we’re building specific cases for roundup-related lawsuits — like our case to save wild horses near Caliente, Nevada where BLM is planning to remove 100% of the herds.

Donate today to take action with us. Your support is key as we continue asserting to stand as the last line of defense between our wild horses and burros and the corporate livestock industry that seeks their destruction.

Thank you for standing with us,


In photos: Why we fight for 🐴🐴🐴


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

It’s hard to fathom the shocking reality of roundups unless you’ve witnessed one. Helicopters stampeding terrified herds across public lands in the brutal summer heat. Foals separated from their mothers, often dropping to the ground due to exhaustion. Crowded pens pulsing with masses of wild horses, trapped within.

When the Triple B wild horse roundup concluded last week, 802 horses were captured. Fourteen wild horses died.

That’s why we work hard to keep representatives in the field — present for every roundup — so we can document the stampede and keep you informed, as gut-wrenching as it truly is.

Below are images and videos we captured of the recent Triple B roundup.

We are in court, in Congress, and on the range fighting to keep wild horses in the wild. Will you make a contribution to AWHC right now so we have the resources to keep up the fight?

This documentation demonstrates greed and cruelty, a reality in which private ranchers and commercial interests dictate what happens to your wild horses roaming your public land.

Donate today to fund our field representation so we can keep you informed and strengthen our case against the Bureau of Land Management.

Until roundups cease, these wild horses and thousands more across the West await an uncertain fate. Until then, our work continues.

– The AWHC Team


We are the last line of defense for America’s wild horses


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

Earlier this month, we set an ambitious fundraising goal of $50,000 to document the BLM’s roundup season, which began in Nevada’s Triple B Complex. That was before this week’s Senate hearing on the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program – a one-sided affair for cattle industry lobbyists, and not a single advocate for preserving America’s wild horses in the wild.

Thanks to you, we hit our $50,000 goal this week. The response from supporters like you has been an incredible boost during the hardest time of the year for wild horses. But to fight back against the stacked proceedings in the Senate – at the same time as the BLM’s terrifying and cruel roundups continue in the West – we’re now raising our goal to make sure everyone, from the American people to their elected leaders on Capitol Hill, sees how inhumane and unnecessary the BLM roundups really are.

We’re doubling down to fight the threats to wild horses and burros. Will you make a donation to help reach our new $100,000 fundraising goal, so we can continue fighting for wild horses in Washington, DC and on our Western public lands?

Thanks to your support, we’ve been out at the Triple B roundup in Nevada these past few weeks — with heartbreaking photo and video evidence that will long outlast this roundup. Just over 800 horses lost their freedom at Triple B this month; 16 of them lost their lives. These include five tiny foals, one of whom was too weak to stand after withstanding a miles-long helicopter stampede and another who died of water toxicity, likely a result of the BLM’s failure to give the vulnerable baby electrolytes after an arduous run in summer heat left him stressed and dehydrated.

We’ll use this evidence for the battles ahead. This week’s Senate hearing wasn’t just about laying the groundwork for more roundups. The cattle industry lobbyists and BLM want money to surgically sterilize wild horses who remain in the wild, by castrating stallions and ripping out the ovaries of wild mares in dangerous and painful surgeries.

The cattle industry’s path forward leads to one place — mass destruction… of wild, free-roaming horses in the wild, and of those in captivity whose days will be numbered when the government funding to care for them runs out.

We’ve increased our fundraising goal because this week’s Senate hearing proved, once again, that we are the last line of defense for keeping wild horses wild on the public lands where they belong. Please make a donation to support our work today.

Thank you for everything you’re doing during this critical time for wild horses and burros. We could not do this work without you.

Thank you,



Feel Good Friday (to start your weekend right!)


The following is from the American Wild Horse Campaign:

Six horses were in a kill pen in Oklahoma, one day away from shipping to slaughter, when AWHC supporters stepped in to save them. Yesterday, these lucky horses arrived in California, where they will spend the rest of their lives in a safe place.

The “Oklahoma Six” are four BLM mustangs and a quarter horse mare and foal – just three weeks old! Earlier this week, you helped us raise enough money to bail them out from the kill pen and transport them from Oklahoma to two of our great sanctuary partners in California.

Three of the mustangs are young and unhandled. One is a 2-year old filly who was in the BLM’s holding facility in Pauls Valley, OK less than three months ago. Their quick turnaround from wild and free on the range, to BLM holding pens, to the slaughter pipeline tells a cautionary tale about the ultimate fate of the thousands of federally protected mustangs that are rounded up and removed from our public lands each year.

Thank you to everyone who stepped up to save these horses and to Chilly Pepper – Miracle Mustang for transporting them safely from Oklahoma to California. Special big thanks as well to our board members Alicia Goetz and Ellie Price and their sanctuaries – Freedom Reigns and Montgomery Creek Ranch – for giving these six lucky horses a safe place to live out the rest of their lives.

We’ll be telling the stories of these horses in the coming days and weeks. Meanwhile, head over to our Facebook page for more info, photos and to share this Feel Good Friday story with your friends and family.


– AWHC Team

PS – Help us help more horses like the Oklahoma 6 by contributing to our rescue fund today


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