Boys ranch to stop taking donated horses

Wednesday, July 23rd 2008, 11:18 am
By: News 9

Associated Press

EDMOND, Okla. -- A boys ranch has stopped accepting donated horses after a published report that some of the animals were sold at auction, possibly for slaughter.

The residential boys home received numerous e-mails opposing and supporting the ranch, which is associated with the Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children, said Steve Childers, spokesman for the group.

The Oklahoman reported that a woman was upset because she gave a horse to the organization only to find out it was sold and was to be taken to Mexico for slaughter.

Patti Deiter, who owns a Tuttle horse breeding farm, managed to buy the horse back.

"This was just wrong, and it needed to be righted," Deiter said. "I'm just glad that this is not going to be happening to any other owners or horses. I'm just glad that this is over."

The boys ranch had accepted donated horses and kept the best dozen or so while selling the others at auction to support the facility. The organization said that some of the horses it sold might have been bought for slaughter but that it did not track who bought the animals.

Deiter initially became concerned about her horse, Tricky, after learning that some organizations sell donated horses, and the final stop for many could turn out to be a slaughterhouse.

She has also now learned that a horse she donated to the ranch in September was sold a month later said Deiter.

Tony Kennedy, president of the Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children, said he was "very, very sorry for the misunderstanding" with Deiter. He said the ranch has a form that clearly states that "when they give the horse, it no longer belongs to them."

The Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children reimbursed Deiter $800,which is what it cost her to buy Tricky back and have a ranch hand pick up the horse.