Rescued Horses Go Up for Adoption Saturday

More than two dozen neglected horses rescued by County Animal Services are now healthy enough to be put up for adoption.

Animal control officers seized 31 horses and other livestock from a property in Valley Center Aug. 23. An investigation into whether criminal charges will be filed is still underway. 

At the time of the rescue, some of the animals were several hundred pounds underweight and many needed long overdue hoof care. After weeks of veterinary care, the horses have regained weight and recovered to the point where they can go to new homes. One horse, a pregnant mare, gave birth to a foal one week after she was rescued and they will both be available for adoption. In addition, two horses from an earlier rescue will be available for adoption.

RELATED: 4 Neglected Horses Rescued in Elfin Forest

Photographs and descriptions of the horses can be found on the department’s website (to search, select Southern Region for shelter and Other for type). Interested adopters can also visit the horses at the department’s animal care facility in Bonita at 5821 Sweetwater Road during normal business hours from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. starting Tuesday, Oct. 7 through Friday, Oct. 10. Additional viewing hours will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct 11.  

Potential adopters must first complete a Horse Adoption Application and submit it to the staff at the facility in Bonita by 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 11. Those with approved applications can take part in the auction that begins shortly afterward. The minimum bid for each horse is $100 except in the case of three mares with foals. Each mare and her foal will be adopted together as a set for a $100 minimum bid. The silent bidding will close at noon.

Winning applicants should be notified by 1:00 p.m. All winning bidders will need to arrange their own transportation for their horse(s) and take possession no later than 5:00 p.m. that same day.

Three llamas and four Dexter (miniature) cattle rescued during the Aug. 23 seizure are being housed at the animal care facility in Carlsbad and they are also available for adoption along with four horses from a separate rescue. Sealed bids for those animals will be accepted during the Bonita auction Saturday. The bids will be opened Monday, Oct. 12 and winners can pick up their animals from the Carlsbad facility Tuesday, Oct. 14. For more information on the adoptions, call (619) 498-2305.  

All three County animal care facilities are open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The facilities are located at 5480 Gaines St., San Diego; 2481 Palomar Airport Rd., Carlsbad; and 5821 Sweetwater Rd., Bonita. For more information on adoptions or to view photos of available animals, visit the department’s Adoptions page.


Tracy DeFore is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact