The 8 Best Horse Rescues in Michigan! (2024)


Owning horses is a huge responsibility. You need access to a large, open space and the ability to pay for a horse’s needs. It can be expensive to own a horse, with yearly estimates nearing $4,000 or more for a single horse.

This annual cost does not include the price of a horse or emergency medical needs. Horse owners also need to know how to care for a horse. 

Unsurprisingly, the cost and responsibility of owning horses can become overwhelming for some. Thankfully, there are numerous horse rescue organizations in the state of Michigan.

If you’re searching for a horse to purchase, getting in touch with one of the horse rescues is an excellent place to start. These horse rescues take in horses of all breeds, ages, and conditions.

By working with these organizations, you’ll receive help finding the perfect horse for you and your family. 

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Why are Horses Given Up?


Horses may be given up for a variety of reasons. According to a study by the Unwanted Horse Coalition, the three most common reasons for an unwanted horse are as follows. 

  1. A change in the owner’s status. Financial difficulties, loss of job, loss of use for the horse, or another change in the horse owner’s life contribute to many horses being given up. Other changes can include a change in the owner’s health or ability to care for the animal, or the owner has to move.
  2. The horse has reached old age or becomes injured.
  3. The horse is unmanageable. Perhaps the owner doesn’t have the time or resources to correct behavioral problems. 

Top 8 Horse Rescues in Michigan


If you and your family are interested in adding a horse to your family, searching for rescue organizations is a great place to start.

Reputable organizations here in Michigan do a great job screening potential new owners to ensure each horse is placed with the right owners. 

Volunteers can work with you to determine your needs and preferences when searching for a horse. Conversely, they will also determine what your land, lifestyle, and financial status can offer a horse. 

Often the horses at these organizations need to be rehabilitated and trained. Volunteers and staff work hard to create lifelong matches for horses and people. 

Here are the top horse rescue organizations in Michigan. 

1. Starry Skies Equine Rescue and Sanctuary


Starry Skies Equine Rescue and Sanctuary is a volunteer-run organization located in Ann Arbor. Take a look through their website to find pictures and information on available horses. 

They keep their website updated regularly and are active on Facebook. Children are welcome as volunteers! An adult must accompany children under 11, and children 12 years and older can be dropped off without a parent. 

If you’re interested in adopting, showcase hours are Saturdays from 5 to 6 pm. Adopting horses is a mission of Starry Skies and they are always happy to help. 

Starry Skies Equine Rescue and Sanctuary Details:

2. Horses Haven


Founder Barbara Baker turned her dream into reality and started Horses Haven in 1995.

This organization aims to rescue, rehabilitate, and find each horse a forever home. Horses Haven often works with local law enforcement and houses horses surrendered due to neglect. 

Horses Haven works with horses, ponies, donkeys, and mules. Currently led by a board of directors and run by a dedicated volunteer base, Horses Haven’s mission is to give less fortunate horses a second chance.

Horses Haven constantly has 50 or more horses on the property. Call ahead to schedule a visit!

Horses Haven Details:

3. Horse North Rescue


Horse North Rescue’s mission is to “rehabilitate and find a home so they can live a life of pure joy.” Located in beautiful Traverse City, Horse North Rescue has a unique 5 step adoption process for their numerous adoptable horses. 

First, submit the application and application fee. Second, a site visit will be completed to ensure your property is up to standard. Third, supply references for Horse North Rescue to check up on.

Fourth, a meet and greet will occur after the site visit and references have been approved. Here, you will interact and ride the horse you are interested in. Fifth, after the application is approved, it is good for two years and is not horse-specific. 

Horse North Rescue Details:

4. Hoof and Heart of Southern Michigan 


Known for being a safe haven for abused, neglected, and slaughter-bound horses, Hoof and Heart of Southern Michigan is home to over 40 equine residents.

Many of these horses would not be alive without the intervention of Hoof and Heart of Southern Michigan. 

While you can also adopt horses, Hoof and Heart also offer fostering opportunities.

This might be a good option for those wanting to care for a horse but aren’t sure they’re ready for a life-long commitment. Feed and medical expenses are covered when you choose to foster!

Hoof and Heart of Southern Michigan Details:

5. Impact Equine


Impact Equine began when the owners decided to start a non-profit horse rescue after years of private rescuing.

They officially started in 2018 and have been rescuing horses ever since, although they have a soft spot for draft horses and thoroughbreds. 

Impact Equine focuses on rescues from a variety of places. They aid local law enforcement in abuse cases, accept local surrenders, intercept horses going to slaughter, and also aid in the rehabilitation of racehorses. 

Take a look through their website at available horses and horses that will become available soon after rehabilitation. 

Impact Equine Details:

6. Saving Grace Miniature Horse Rescue


If you’re interested in possibly adopting a miniature horse, check out this organization. The director has been a lifelong horse lover and started her miniature horse rescue in 2014. 

Take a look at Saving Grace’s website for all available miniature horses. While some horse owners look to purchase a miniature horse to become a companion to their current horse, this is not an option at Saving Grace.

Each miniature horse adopted is required to have their pasture for safety purposes. 

Check out Saving Grace’s Miniature Horse Rescue’s website for their adoption process and contract. Available miniature horses are listed on the site as well!

Saving Grace Miniature Horse Rescue Details:

7. Beyond the Roses Equine Rescue and Retirement


Have you ever wondered what happens to racehorses after they get too old or injured to compete? Sadly, many are neglected or even sent to slaughter. Thankfully, rescue organizations like Beyond the Roses Equine Rescue and Retirement exist. 

This volunteer-based group works with retired racehorses and other horses in need of rehabilitation and healing to find a forever home. This organization was founded in 2012 by a group of citizens concerned about the welfare of retired racehorses. 

Take a look through their website at current equine residents and those available for adoption. 

Beyond the Roses Equine Rescue and Retirement Details:

8. The Mustang Acres Farm


The Mustang Acres Farm is an equine and dog rescue located in Capac, Michigan. Their mission is to save neglected and slaughter-bound horses and to rehabilitate them before adopting them out to their forever homes.

However, The Mustang Acres Farm is unique in that it places a special emphasis on wild horses. The work they do with wild horses is an effort to save and preserve the American Mustang heritage. 

At Mustang Acres Farm, their mission is three parts. First, to save as many neglected horses as possible. Second, to preserve the American Mustang heritage. Third, to save any other needy animals along the way, such as dogs. However, their main focus is on horses. 

Mustang Acres Farm Details:

Conclusion For “Best Horse Rescues in Michigan”


If you’re looking into ​​horse adoption here in Michigan, you’re in luck! There are a plethora of highly reputable and well-respected horse sanctuaries and rescues to get into contact with. 

One of the best reasons to work with a rescue organization is that they are very motivated to find responsible, kind, and well-intentioned owners. They will do their best to match you with the perfect horse. 

Be open and upfront about your situation, wants, and needs when contacting a rescue.

Be honest about your property size. Research any local regulations that would inhibit your ability to take on a rescue horse. Also, have your veterinarian’s contact information available. Nearly all organizations will ask to speak to your vet as a reference.

Do your research, take your time, and good luck finding your perfect rescue horse!

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