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May 16, 2011

Doris Day Center Opens its Doors to Rescued Horses

“There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man,” Winston Churchill is said to have remarked about the domesticated animal that’s had perhaps a more significant impact on the human experience than any other. I sure felt better on the inside after rubbing the forehead, neck, and nose of a few horses at the brand-spanking new Doris Day Horse Rescue and Adoption Center this weekend.

Wayne Pacelle at the Doris Day Horse Rescue and Adoption Center in Texas
Amanda Massey
At the Doris Day center this weekend.

The center is named in honor of the legendary actress and animal advocate, whose foundation helped jump-start construction of a beautiful arena and stable that are the heart of the new facility. It’s designed to be a safe haven and rehabilitation and adoption center for horses who previously experienced some terrible misfortune at the hands of some callous people. It’s situated on the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch, which in itself is the largest animal sanctuary in America, and both facilities are now run by The HSUS and The Fund for Animals.

The weather was perfect, the crowds were large, and the horses were fit and sharp. Several people who came to the official ribbon-cutting for the new Doris Day center felt the tug of the bond and decided they wanted to adopt some of the horses, and we were off to a great start with the new center.

Both the grounds and the animals at Black Beauty and the new Doris Day center looked marvelous, and the people who flocked there, mainly from East Texas, seemed to agree, with long lines for the tour buses taking visitors around to see the chimps, the buffalo, the horses, and the dozens of other species who now call this wonderful place their home.

Earlier in the week, I had visited HSUS’s South Florida Wildlife Center, which is probably the largest wildlife rehabilitation facility in the nation, taking in more than 12,000 injured or orphaned wild animals last year alone. Under the direction of executive director Sherry Schlueter, this facility looks great, too.

HSUS’s high-flying campaigns to crack down on puppy mills, factory farming, animal fighting, and the Canadian seal hunt get a lot of public attention. But day in and day out, HSUS cares for more animals than any organization in the nation. Last year, we provided direct care to more than 100,000 animals. We have teams deployed now in multiple states helping animals who are victims of tornadoes and floods.

If you love animals, you’ll want to put Black Beauty, the new Doris Day center, and the South Florida Wildlife Center on your travel itinerary. They are great places to see, and they represent just part of our commitment to helping animals in need.

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