The Wild Inside
The Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros act of 1971 states “Wild free-roaming horses shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death. (Except where appropriate population levels) would be achieved by the removal or destruction of excess animals.”
The federal government has captured over 300,000 wild horses in the years since that act was passed. A little less than 50,00 of these horses are kept in holding facilities.
Some inmates from the Arizona State correctional facility have been chosen to participate in a program in which they are required to gentle some of these horses in order to prepare them for adoption. These inmates have been classified as ‘low risk of escaping’, although their crimes and backgrounds are very different.
The prisoners form deep bonds with the animals, and learn to relate to them as if they were small children. Each man has to gain the animal’s trust first before he is able to work with it.
In Arizona, 49% of felons return to prison within five years. This program seems to have such a positive effect that the majority of those who participate in it stay away for good after they’re released. So far over 700 horses have been adopted thanks to this program. Watch this interesting film now.