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Wild Horses From West Up For Adoption In Michigan

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A group of wild horses walk through a field July 7, 2005 in Eureka, Nevada. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

A group of wild horses walk through a field July 7, 2005 in Eureka, Nevada. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

CASSOPOLIS, Mich. (AP) – About 40 wild horses and burros will be trucked from the West to Michigan to be offered for adoption at an event this month, officials said.

The U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management will offer horses that are up to 5 years old on Aug. 16-17 at McKinleys Harmony Acres, MLive.com reported.

“While the adoption process is simple and straightforward, anyone considering adoption of a wild horse should remember that the animals are wild and require gentling and training, said the Bureau of Land Management’s Eastern States State Director John Lyon.

The event is in the Cassopolis area, about 75 miles southwest of Grand Rapids, and it one of several scheduled around the country this summer.

The horse adoptions come as officials, animal welfare groups, ranchers and others work to deal with horse overpopulation. Horse rescue groups have said there are a rising number of neglected and starving horses as the West deals with persistent drought.

Adoption applications are available online or on the day of the event, and those wanting a horse must meet certain requirements, such as having sturdy corrals that are 20 feet by 20 feet or larger and specific fence heights based on the age of the horse.

A preview of the animals is 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Aug. 16, followed by adoption on a first-come, first-served basis from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 17. They’re being offered for relatively low adoption fees; for animals less than 3 years of age, for example, it is $125.

Allegan veterinarian Jim Connell, however, said people should be cautious when considering whether to adopt a horse that was in the wild. Some may look at this as an opportunity to get an inexpensive horse, he said, but those being put up for adoption can be difficult to keep.

“I think the best adopter is someone who is committed to that horse; an advanced, experienced horseman,” Connell said.

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(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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