Adoption Process

Contact us.  Tell us what kind of horse you’d like.  Be sure to be clear on any deal-breakers or must-haves.     We will discuss your needs and see if any of the currently available horses meet what you’re looking for.    If you’d like, we’d be happy to keep your name on file, if something you’d like becomes available in the near future.     Ask lots of questions!

It is our goal to place the horse in a loving, forever home.  If you aren’t sure how long you’ll be keeping the horse, adopting from Equihab may not be right for you.

Make an appointment.  All horses are shown by appointment only.    Please specify which horse(s) you’d like to meet, since we utilize several foster farm locations in the area.    If you cannot make it, you must call to cancel or reschedule.

  • Be willing to reschedule for inclement weather; we do not have an indoor arena.
  • You must wear appropriate footwear (eg. no open toed shoes).   To ride, you MUST wear a safety helmet, so please bring yours.   Sorry, but these are insurance company rules.
  • For safety reasons, please leave younger kids at home, unless the horse is for them.   These are private farms and may not be set up with safe areas for kids to play.     Do not bring pets, please.

  • Do bring family members and anyone else who will be regularly riding or handling the horse.
  • Do bring any experienced people you’d like to evaluate the horse, eg. trainer/instructor, vet, farrier.
  • Do bring any tack you’d like to try out.   It’s the only way to know if your saddle fits.

Pain-free adoption application:   No 20 page adoption application or high-pressure interrogation!

Please give us some information about yourself, your goals, and your idea horse.  We provided a short Adoption Questionnaire (MS Word doc format or Acrobat PDF format)  to cover the common questions.  Feel free to add additional comments, photos, or anything else you want to share.

If it looks like you like the horse & he likes you, then we will ask for references, ask some follow-up questions, and discuss it.    A criminal background check and other checks are done to ensure the horse will not go to a kill-buyer/broker, animal abuser, someone convicted of fraud or violent crimes, etc.

  • First time horse owners OK!  :   adoptions to those who demonstrate a willingness to learn and who have a support system (experienced horse people, trainers, etc) easily available.   We are willing to mentor local residents.
  • Boarders are OK!
  • Adopters must adhere to the minimum standards of care for equines (PDF file), even if you do not live in Maryland.   If your state has more strict rules, the more strict guidelines will prevail.   The adoption contract requires that you agree never to abandon, neglect, slaughter, auction, refuse to supply essential medical care, or auction.   Our ideal adopter is looking to provide a forever home.   If adopter experiences major life changes, this is a safety net for an owner who is going through a divorce, has become disabled, is facing foreclosure, passed away, etc.   If you wish to transfer the horse to someone, this is allowed, provided they would pass the Equihab approval process.
  • We will always take back an Equihab horse at any time for any reason!   (Though at least a week’s notice is preferred to arrange transport and prepare for his arrival, if possible.)

We welcome — even encourage — you to visit more than once.   The better you get to know the horse, the more likely the adoption will be a happy one.

Distance: We do not adopt out to addresses outside of our region of the country.   We found that it’s prohibitively expensive to ship the horse out.   It’s also difficult for potential adopters to come and spend the time to get to know the horse.    Preference is given to those within 2 hours of Cecil County, Maryland 21901.  We do adopt out to MD, PA, DE, VA, and NJ.   Board of Directors approval is needed to place horses further away than our local area.

Finalize the adoption:   Just set a date/time to take delivery of you new horse.  Delivery is FREE to farms within 60 miles of our zip code (21901).   Adoption fee and a signed adoption contract is required before the horse is considered “adopted” and removed from the “adoptables” list.