South Florida SPCA Horse Rescue
Saving Abused and Abandoned Horses and Livestock in Miami-Dade, Florida Since 1992
S outh Florida SPCA (SFSPCA) is the last line of defense for abused and abandoned horses in Miami-Dade, Florida. It’s the only thing standing between them and starvation, death, and even slaughter. The GFAS and TAA accredited 501(c)(3) nonprofit works with the county and responds 24/7 to local law enforcement to investigate cruelty and abandonment cases, and to seize and care for those victims at its Homestead, FL facility. Marking its 25th year in 2017, SFSPCA is the only organization qualified to rescue, rehabilitate, retrain and rehome horses in Miami-Dade.
Since 1992, SFSPCA has pursued its mission to:
In cooperation with local law enforcement, SFSPCA rescues horses from abusive situations – including cases of animal cruelty and abandonment – and provides them with safe shelter, proper nutrition and immediate medical care.
The horses SFSPCA rescues come from the worst conditions imaginable. Life saving measures are the first priority, involving extensive veterinary treatment, a careful refeeding program, and extraordinary efforts by staff and volunteers to restore abused horses’ health and trust.
When physically and mentally ready, SFSPCA’s rescued horses receive training/retraining by staff and in some cases, outside professionals, to give them the best possible chance at adoption.
SFSPCA’s goal is to adopt each horse into a forever home where its emotional, social, and medical needs
will be met and where it will be happy, safe, and loved for the rest of its life. An Adoption Committee oversees the comprehensive application process, and provides post-adoption support and monitoring.
SFSPCA is dedicated to educating the public and promoting the humane treatment of equines through its outreach, member and volunteer programs, as well as through its website and social media channels. Events and community appearances also help raise awareness.
The fight for horses doesn’t stop at the ranch. SFSPCA promotes the welfare of equines through local and national advocacy. Its Legal Task Force, comprised of top attorneys, works pro bono assisting the county and state attorneys in the prosecution of civil seizure and criminal cruelty cases.
- 2018 Horses & Animals by-the-numbers: 144 intakes (60 equines + 84 other livestock); 21 adoptions; 67 transfer of ownerships; 16 reunited with owners; 23 euthanized*; 2 died.
- Since its founding in 1992, South Florida SPCA has rescued over 2,500 horses and other livestock.
- SFSPCA is a dedicated horse rescue that serves Miami-Dade County only. It does not rescue cats, dogs or other domestic pets.
- SFSPCA is a private, independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and is not part of ASPCA nor affiliated with other SPCA groups.
- In the early years, SFSPCA averaged 15 to 20 horses in its care. Now, 50 or more horses are the norm.
- SFSPCA’s annual operating budget is $800,000. The organization relies on donations and grants from individuals, foundations, trusts and corporations to sustain itself.**
- As an added measure of protection for its rescues, SFSPCA is not open to the public and does not publish its physical address.
- SFSPCA was instrumental in the passing of Florida’s Ivonne Rodriguez and Victoria McCullough Horse Protection Act of 2010, which gives law enforcement and the justice system the tools they need to make arrests and bring criminal horse abusers to justice.
- With over 500,000 horses in the state, Florida has the third largest equine population in the country. (Texas is #1 and California is #2.)
*This number includes 11 pigs that tested positive for pseudorabies.
**Since 2008, Miami-Dade Animal Services Department (ASD) has provided partial funding required to the SFSPCA for the care and rescue of abandoned and stray horses and other large farm animals. ASD provides comprehensive animal services including: large and small animal cruelty investigations, pet adoption programs, and funds local outreach spay/neuter services through private veterinary offices and two satellite clinics. In 2015, ASD achieved its no kill goal. The new Pet Adoption Center is located in Doral, Florida. For more information please visit http://www.miamidade.gov/animals/ or call 311.