CRR strives to provide open, honest dialogue with potential adopters in the hopes of finding the perfect match.
CRR approaches each horse as an individual. The horses receive an appropriate amount of time to fully let down from the track. OTTBs are used to a structured, athletic lifestyle with high energy feed. Because everything in their life changes upon retirement, they all need time to become accustomed to life as a horse prior to beginning retraining. This gives their mind and bodies time to adjust to a new diet, new athletic demands, and new lifestyle. Plus, some physical problems can become evident once the horse is no longer physically fit, while other problems need the time to resolve. During the let down process, we learn how each horse lives both in a stall, as well as in a herd on turnout, about their feet, soundness, ease of care, and handling. Once the horse has been let down, we begin evaluation rides to see where the horse is at prior to developing a retraining program.
CRR believes in developing a methodical foundation based on a classical approach. Most of the horses receive extensive in-hand work prior to riding, in order to build new muscle patterns better suited for life as a riding horse versus a race horse. Because many of the horses do not have the stamina or suppleness to carry themselves as riding horses, in-hand work develops this without adding the stress of a rider. This also allows the trainers at CRR the time to see if there are unknown soundness issues before asking more of each horse. Once the horse can better carry themselves in-hand, the riding work begins with a lot of walking. The goal is to slowly build the balance, muscle, and suppleness to support a riding career, whatever their new discipline might be. Walk work builds into trot work typically within the first few months. Canter work and cavaletti work begins once the horse is adequately strong and supple. While many horses are rehomed prior to receiving a thorough foundation, which takes years, we start the training the same with all of them in the hopes of laying as much of a foundation for their new home as possible. Taking a slow, methodical approach produces quiet, responsive horses.
CRR takes a slow approach to let down, retraining, and rehoming in the hopes of improving long term outcomes for both the horse and the adopter. We prefer to evaluate each horse during turnout, in the stall, daily handling, health and soundness, ease of keeping, and under saddle prior to listing them as available for adoption. We believe that it is not possible to adequately know a horse until they have been at CRR for a good period of time. Many of our horses are at CRR for about a year prior to adoption. There are exceptions when the right home walks in soon after a horse arrives, but this is most definitely the exception.
Adopters can reach out to CRR or follow our website and social media platforms for a list of horses and where they are at in the evaluation and retraining process. We prefer to have conversations with potential adopters regarding goals, preferences in horses, and potential horses that might work for them and encourage all potential adopters to visit multiple times. CRR adopters have access to CRR for the life of the horse, whether they need advise, help rehoming the horse in the future, or retirement care. We are dedicated to both our adopters and our horses.