Founded in 1992 and operational in 1993, the South Florida Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has rescued over 2,000 horses and other livestock animals. For more than twenty years, SFSPCA has been available 24 hours a day to respond to calls from law enforcement to quickly to remove large stray animals to a safe environment where they do not pose a danger to themselves or the community. SFSPCA is the only organization in South Florida capable of and with the track record to respond to public safety and humane emergencies involving horses and other livestock animals on such a large scale.
For more than twenty years, SFSPCA has pursued its mission to:
- Rescue, provide medical treatment, shelter and care for horses and domestic farm animals.
- Rehabilitate the animals and place them with permanent adopters.
- Promote the welfare and well-being of animals through education.
- Educate the public on responsible animal care and the value of every life.
When people think of South Florida, they think of sun, sand, and surf. They don’t think of horses. We do. Florida ranks #3 in the nation with an equine population of over 500,000. Horses are big business in Florida, adding hundreds of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars to Florida’s economy. With over half a million horses in Florida at any given time, inevitably some will fall through the cracks. Many will be unspeakably neglected, abused, abandoned and even slaughtered.
A few years ago, 15 to 20 horses at our rescue ranch was the norm. Now we seldom have fewer than 60.”
In August 2012, we had a record-breaking 96 horses in our care! More and more animals need our care because more and more people are abandoning or neglecting to feed and care for their horses.
SFSPCA is also an advocate for horses and their well-being. Due in large part to the efforts of SFSPCA, Florida became one of the most horse-protective states in the union and a legislative model for other states with the passage of the Ivonne Rodriguez and Victoria McCullough Horse Protection Act of 2010. This act gives law enforcement and the justice system the tools they need to make arrests and bring criminal horse abusers to justice.
Another achievement was our advocacy to provide humane protocols governing the treatment of lead ponies (horses that accompany Thoroughbreds to and from the race track) at Calder Race Track. These protocols were adopted through our efforts.
From hurricanes to the economy, SFSPCA has successfully met every crisis. The SFSPCA has not only survived but grown to meet the increasing demands imposed upon it.