We teamed up with two other horse rescue organizations to save Donya and two of her pasture mates from terrible neglect and starvation. When we found them, they were eating rotten vegetables, some of which were toxic for horses, they had limited access to water, and were covered in ticks. This sweet mare is an Off-the-Track Thoroughbred (OTTB) who survived living in horrible conditions to once again flourish in good health and spirit at Sunrise.
Pace was a packhorse in Supai, Arizona, used to carry tourists gear in and out of the Grand Canyon under unspeakable conditions of abuse and starvation. Two friends of Sunrise were on vacation when they witnessed this, and worked tirelessly to rescue Pace and raise awareness about the abuse of Havasupai pack animals, which has been occurring for over 40 years.
Moe was a 29 year old Quarter Horse with a gentle and sweet spirit. After serving his owners for many years as a long distance trail horse, Moe was sent to a livestock auction where the only ones bidding on him were meat buyers. He finally found a safe home at Sunrise, where he made many friends that will miss him dearly.
This big guy was rescued from a farm in Napa and was near starvation when we were contacted by a concerned stable-hand. We got there just before his owner was planning on using a rifle to put him down. Barney touched the lives of many in his short time with us, but unfortunately he was so unhealthy that he was beyond the point of possible recovery. He was humanely euthanized surrounded by people who loved him.
Wal-E was a much-loved little Morgan who was brought to Sunrise because the medications he needed for metabolic condition were too expensive for his owner. He was the resident goofball who always brought a smile to everyone’s face with his sweet, silly antics. After many years of quality love and care, Wal-E was humanely euthanized after a lost battle with colic. He is sorely missed.
This little angel was a 19 year old Welsh Pony. After giving many years of her life for the enjoyment of the children who rode her, she was abandoned at a puppymill. Her feet were never trimmed, her stall was never cleaned, and worst of all she had no interaction with anyone. Princess also had several medical conditions that went untreated, including melanoma. At Sunrise, Princess received all the medical care she needed as well as all of the love and attention she deserved.
A 19 year old Quarter Horse, Molly was Captain’s sweetheart. She was one of the many, many horses who are over worked and then discarded by those who have used her up. This sweet lady could barely walk due to the injuries and arthritis she sustained from her work as a roping horse. With anti-inflammatory meds & special corrective shoes, Molly would often be found trotting around the pasture with Captain. We know that she is now running free with no pain and is grateful for her second chance.
Comet was used in a Mexican rodeo sport known as “tripping” where the horses are made to gallop and then their front hooves are roped, causing them to flip and crash. He sustained many injuries as a trip horse before ending up in a hoarding situation in Napa where there was little or no food for him to survive on. He was sweet and grateful for his rescue, and he quickly regained weight and life in his eyes. Sadly, he had only a few months of the good life at Sunrise before he succumbed to his injuries.
Jake’s elderly owners just decided to stop feeding him. He was found standing near the carcass of his pasture mate, eating dirt in an attempt to fill his empty stomach. He was so fearful of humans when he arrived at Sunrise that he would shake at even a gentle touch. With Captain by his side, Jake quickly learned of human kindness and began to look forward to attention from volunteers. He spent many years at Capi's side before being humanely euthanized when his arthritis became too much to bare.
Rain was a loving, sweet Arabian mare who was near starvation when she found us. After a life of being over-used as a brood mare and then cast aside when she was too old for the job, she spent the last year of her life grazing in the vineyards and being doted on by many young volunteers at the rescue before she took herself on her last vineyard stroll and was defeated by cancer.
Born with crooked front legs, Stryder was a 16 year old Thoroughbred who was unable to race and so was thrown away from the racing industry. He was found in a muddy dog kennel with infected wounds in all 4 legs. Stryder was a gentle giant who would follow you like a puppy dog and stand quietly while volunteers brushed his beautiful coat. He had a huge heart and personality and had made very special bonds with many of our volunteers. He will be missed by all.
Miss Rita was a 19 year old former racehorse who went on to have a long career as a show jumping and lesson horse. Until she could no longer jump that is, and she was scheduled to be euthanized before she was rescued. She had given her life in service to man... until she came to Sunrise Horse Rescue for a long-overdue break, where nothing was expected of her but to just be a horse. Rest in peace, pretty girl.
This pretty little horse was a 24 year old Peruvian Paso. He had a lot of rough training and mishandling in his life. Before coming to SHR he lived all alone with no other horses to interact with. His rehabilitation had included time with his equine friends and lots of gentle handling by our faithful volunteers.
Tazz, among many other roles, was the Spokes-pony for SHR. He was a 29 year old Arabian and due to his incredibly calm and outgoing nature was the perfect horse to represent Sunrise at various events around the valley. Having had only 2 homes in his long life, he represented the kind of care we believe all horses should receive. He was a friend, teacher and an inspiration to many.
Quite possibly the oldest horse in Napa County, “Capi” was over 40! No one is sure of his breed, though we speculate that he could have been an Icelandic Pony. Many years ago, this old man was rescued from a slaughter yard and brought to Sunrise to enjoy life in peace and comfort. He has touched the lives of many and will be very missed.
Charlie was a twenty-five year old Arabian mix gelding. He came to us in 2012 after he had served as a trail horse and a children's lesson horse for many years. Charlie was a fun horse to be around and formed strong attachments with his pasture mates and his human friends. He was very intelligent and communicative, and his curiosity and friendliness never ceased to entertain. He is missed by many!
Pete was a 17 year old, 16 hand Palomino gelding. He was a former police horse who sadly found himself neglected and starved with 100 pounds of sand in his stomach. Pete was well-mannered and very sweet despite being neglected for so long. Sunrise became aware of Pete's situation and agreed to take him in to the rescue. Pete was a 1 out of 10 on the body scale, 1 being the worst condition. In his last months at Sunrise, he received the best care available and was surrounded by people who loved him.
Quincy was a beautiful Paso Fino Mare in her late 20's who was a show pony. She came to Sunrise when her previous owner could no longer care for her and her best buddy Ged. Due to her severe arthritis she could no longer be ridden or re-homed, so rescue was her only option. Quincy was comforted around the clock by our dedicated volunteers until she was humanely euthanized due to colic.
Every year thousands of wild American Mustangs are rounded up and put up for adoption. If not adopted, these horses may end up sitting in overcrowded holding pens for the rest of their lives or may even be sent to slaughter. Dusty is a 19 year old American Mustang who has, after many unfit homes, found Sunrise as a place where she can just be a horse again.
During a very stormy winter in 2010, concerned neighbors called SHR about a pair of horses that were in a desperate situation. Blitzen and his pasture mate, Comet, were living in a debris-filled yard with no shelter, food or water, they were eating the bark off of fallen trees and drinking dirty water to stay alive. Blitzen is a 16 year old American Mustang. He is incredibly smart, and, despite his rough life, he responded quickly to natural horsemanship training and human kindness.