FAQ

“Adopters are an extension of the heart and hands of Rainbow Meadows”.
  -Karen Everhart MEd., Co-founder Rainbow Meadows Equine Rescue and Retirement, Inc.

*Note: While the majority of rescued equids at Rainbow Meadows are horses, we also rescue donkeys and mules. Therefore, when “horse” is used in the FAQ text below, it is also referencing donkeys and mules.

Individuals who appreciate the personality, heart and thinking/reasoning skills of horses and other equids are well suited to consider adoption. Individuals who elect to adopt have an elevated sense of concern about horse and equid welfare. They understand that these animals require a commitment which lasts the life of the animal (potentially 25-30 years or more) and that the "unwanted” horse or equid is most often simply an animal that finds itself in the wrong place at the wrong time.

When an individual is approved to adopt from Rainbow Meadows and agrees to the established protocols, no adoption fee is charged. It is our belief that refraining from “selling” our horses and equids for a fee helps elevate the overall welfare of horses, donkeys and mules in America. Rainbow Meadows does request that a free-will donation to our Pay It Forward program be provided at the time of adoption or foster which will help us save the next horse.

Yes. An adoption agreement is signed and dated at the time the horse or equid is picked up from Rainbow Meadows and serves to provide clear understanding of the expectations between the rescue and the adopting party.

The numbers, types and ages of the horses and equids at Rainbow Meadows change every day. However, depending on our census at any given time, one will find:

  • All breeds
  • All sizes
  • All ages
  • All colors
  • All training levels

The only thing you will not find for adoption are stallions or jacks (male donkeys and mules), as they are gelded prior to adoption.

No. Per our adoption agreement, no mare may be bred. If an accidental breeding occurs, the adopter is responsible for alerting Rainbow Meadows immediately and a decision will be made regarding the circumstances of the breeding and if the mare and foal are to be forfeited or seized under breach of contract or if they should remain with the adopter. A foal from an adopted mare is the property of Rainbow Meadows and must be transferred through the adoption process, just like its dam.

No. Our expectation is that the adopted horse or equid will remain with the adopter for its lifetime. Should that not be possible, the horse must be forfeited back to the rescue with the forfeiture date determined by the rescue.

The horses and equids at Rainbow Meadows come from a variety of sources:

  1. Owner surrender - our primary source of adoptable horses is via owner surrender. It is the belief of Rainbow Meadows that if we can intervene with a concerned and loving owner that has found herself/himself in a situation where the care of the horse is no longer possible, then we keep the animal from sliding off the slippery slope towards the sale barn and the kill buyer.
  2. Seizure - Rainbow Meadows is committed to the support of law enforcement as they execute warrants to remove horses and equids from locations where they have suffered abuse and neglect. We offer Custodial Care services to agencies so that there is a location and experienced staff to care for the seized horses that are often in need of critical care. When the legal processes have been completed and the animals can be released for rehoming, those horses can then be legally admitted to Rainbow Meadows. Once completely rehabilitated, those horses become available for adoption.
  3. Abandonment - On rare occasion, horses or other equids have been reported as abandoned. Rainbow Meadows works with the reporting party or law enforcement agency to comply with the Estray Law in the jurisdiction where the animal is found and contained. Once proper notification via local print media has occurred and the requisite time has passed, Rainbow Meadows admits, rehabilitates and re-homes the animal.

It is important to note that Rainbow Meadows does not participate in any activity which will support the financial gain of a kill buyer utilizing organizational funds. We will not purchase a horse, donkey or mule from a killer feedlot or a kill buyer. We will not go to auction to bid against the kill buyer. However, on occasion Rainbow Meadows has accepted animals that were purchased from the kill lots or kill buyers by individuals or groups.

First and foremost, you must have a compassionate heart and understand that an adopted horse or equid is no different than one obtained anywhere else and that they deserve a loving forever home. In addition, Rainbow Meadows also makes the following requirements:

  • Per Kansas law, you must be 18 years of age or older to enter into a legal and binding contract.
  • You must demonstrate adequate resources to provide for the animal on a daily basis and in times of illness or injury.
  • You must be able to provide a safe facility with adequate grazing room, appropriate shelter and at least one other horse or equid companion.
  • You must be able to provide safe transportation for your adopted horse to its new home.
  • You must have an equine veterinarian and equine farrier identified and ready to serve your adopted animal.
  • You must be willing to make a lifetime commitment to the horse or equid you elect to adopt.
  • You must complete the routine reporting required by the rescue for the life of the animal.

Rainbow Meadows provides its adopters with a comprehensive Adoption File which includes everything we know about the animal’s health and wellness from the time it was admitted to the date of adoption. This includes records of all vaccinations, dewormings, hoof care, Coggins, dental floats, baths, illnesses and injuries.

No horse or equid will ever leave Rainbow Meadows if there is any suspicion that it is sick or has been exposed to another sick animal. However, we do recommend a reasonable quarantine within sight of other horses or equids so that the adopted animal can become familiar with its new environment and new handlers long before it enters into new relationships with other horses.

Rainbow Meadows ensures that any animal adopted is up to date on vaccinations (EWT-WN and rabies), deworming (rotational), hoof care, Coggins (within 2 years) and dental float (within 2 years) when adopted.

No, we leave our horses and equids barefoot at all times, utilizing boots if needed for protection.

We utilize methods which are pain-free. We never use harsh bits or spurs on the horses. Our training takes a lot of time because we want the horses to enjoy their training and not dread it. Most of our saddle training is completed bitless.

Rainbow Meadows is located south of Sedan, Kansas - just 2.5 miles north of the Oklahoma border in east central Kansas (see address and location map).Approximate travel times:

  • From Topeka - 3 hours
  • From Kansas City - 3.5 hours
  • From Emporia - 2 hours
  • From Wichita - 1 hour 45 minutes
  • From Arkansas City - 45 minutes
  • From Joplin, MO - 2 hours
  • From Bartlesville, OK - 45 minutes
  • From Tulsa, OK - 1 hour 45 minutes
  • From Oklahoma, City OK - 3 hours 15 minutes

Yes, we do adopt to other states if the adopter is willing to comply with all of our protocols and processes. We have no concern with facilitating adoptions to other states; however, for a horse to cross state lines, Rainbow Meadows must coordinate a Health Certificate to be completed by a veterinarian but the adopter is responsible for the associated fee.

That is your decision. At the time of this writing (late 2016), no pre-purchase exam has ever been requested. Should you decide to request said exam you are 100% responsible for making those arrangements (the exam must occur at Rainbow Meadows Ranch) and provide payment for all services requested to the veterinarian of your choice

Yes. However corporate policy requires that all riders (including staff) must wear an ATSM/SEI approved equestrian riding helmet. All riding will occur in an enclosed arena or round pen area. Rainbow Meadows DOES NOT provide riding helmets for public use.

The adoption process can be outlined in the following steps:

  1. Complete our online adoption/foster application.
  2. If no concerns are evident on the application, you will receive an email inviting you to visit Rainbow Meadows.
  3. Schedule a visit to the rescue.
  4. Select the horse or equid you are interested in adopting.
  5. Coordinate with Rainbow Meadows staff/volunteers for a facility inspection.
  6. Complete the facility inspection.
  7. If the facility is approved, schedule a pick-up date/time.
  8. On date of pick-up, complete the Adoption Agreement and other paperwork and review the Adoption File.
  9. Transport your new friend safely to its new home.

See more about adoption here.
Adopt

No. A facility inspection must be completed and approved and the Adoption File completed (which takes 3-4 hours per animal) before the animal can be adopted.

The adopted animal may be returned and forfeited within the first six months of adoption as long as the horse or equid is up to date (within 6 months) on all wellness care and is not suffering from any injury or illness which compromises its quality of life. If the animal is returned after the six-month window, there is a return fee required at forfeiture. Date of admission of forfeited animal is at the discretion of the rescue.

While nearly all the rescued horses and equids at Rainbow Meadows are available for adoption, Rainbow Meadows does foster those that would be categorized as “companion only” animals out to forever homes. It is expected that the foster is making a lifetime commitment to the animal, which is generally elderly or otherwise suffering from a disability that makes it unsuitable for adoption. If interested in fostering, please contact Karen Everhart, Executive Director.

Yes, Rainbow Meadows has a privacy policy in place for the information it collects through its website. Read the privacy policy in full.