A young horse named Crash will begin 2017 with a new outlook on life – and the possibility of a brighter future – thanks to the Unwanted Horse Coalition’s Operation Gelding Program.
Two-year-old Crash was named for busting through several fences when he was only a few weeks old. Owned by Nikki Rebel, Crash was castrated at the final Operation Gelding clinic for 2016 and was the 100th stallion to be gelded in clinics organised by mother-daughter team Kaye Garrison and Lacey Edge.
Kaye and Lacey have been with the program since 2010. Lacey, who was 13 years old at the time, learned about the program after conducting research for a school project. This year, she returned from West Texas A&M University to continue the tradition.
Ten volunteers, including local Flower Mound, Texas, veterinarian Dr C.G. Freeny, gave a total of 116 hours to plan and conduct the clinic.
“I was thrilled to attend this final clinic for 2016,” said UHC Director, Jennifer Purcell. “It was exciting to celebrate such a big milestone for the program, plus it was a chance to personally thank everyone involved. Dr. Freeny not only donated her time, but created a dynamic learning experience for the college and veterinary students who were there to help.”
Since 2010, the UHC’s Operation Gelding program has provided funding to geld 1562 stallions at 122 clinics in 31 states. This year, 348 stallions were castrated, just 18 fewer than the last two years combined.
Numbers are expected to surge again in 2017 when the program will pay $100 per horse, an increase that was approved by the UHC at its annual meeting last June. Vouchers are also available to owners with financial need.