Horse News

SD Dewey County Auditor Creates Way to Donate to Starving former Wild Horses

Source: The Rapid City Journal

Update:  The Dewey County Auditor has joined the ranks of those trying to help horses at a South Dakota ranch that are reportedly dying of starvation and other causes.

The horses are at the rural Lantry ranch of the International Society for the Protection of Mustangs and Burros, in north-central South Dakota about 110 miles northeast of Rapid City.

A Tuesday evening Facebook post by the Dewey County Sheriff’s Office says the Dewey County Auditor has set up an account, the ISPMB Horse Fund, to help feed the horses.

Money can be sent to: Dewey County Auditor, P.O. Box 277, Timber Lake, S.D., 57656, according to the post. People are asked to make checks payable to Dewey County and mark them for the ISPMB Horse Fund.

The post adds that the Dewey and Ziebach county sheriff’s offices are making a list of local farmers and ranchers with hay for sale that can be bought for the horses.

If sellers have grass hay available, they can contact Dewey County Sheriff Les Mayer at 605-865-3330 or Ziebach County Sheriff Gary Cudmore at 605-365-5177.

According to a former employee of the sanctuary who went public last week, a lack of control over the ranch’s ballooning horse population taxed the organization’s pastures and finances to a crisis point.

The former employee, Colleen Burns, said 30 or more horses have died since June for lack of grass, hay and veterinary care. Her photographic evidence shows badly emaciated horses, some dead and some dying, and some with overgrown hooves or grotesque injuries or wounds.

Mayer said last week that he has investigated the ranch and turned over his findings to the two state’s attorneys. A veterinarian for the state Animal Industry Board has also investigated the alleged neglect of the horses and is advising the state’s attorneys.

Several other wild-horse organizations have also stepped in to help, including Hot Springs-based Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary.

Susan Watt, executive director, said donations enabled two truckloads of hay to be dropped off at the Lantry ranch by Monday morning. Given the ranch’s estimated population of more than 600 horses, Watt estimated that amounted to only three days of feed.

She encouraged anyone wishing to donate money, hay or pasture space for the ailing horses to contact her at 605-745-7494 or

Watt said she’s willing to accept the donations or put contributors directly in touch with a hay seller. The website also notes that people can send checks to IRAM, Box 998, Hot Springs, S.D., 57747, marked “attention ISPMB Emergency Hay Fund.” Online donations can be made in $50 increments at

10 replies »

  1. All the more reason to STOP the roundups and removals and put the captives back where they belong…on their LEGAL Herd Management Areas.
    Wild Horse & Burro sanctuaries are a port in a storm and cannot replace what has been taken from these animals.
    The excellent research that has been done at ISPMB in conjunction with Princeton University is irrefutable.
    More than 22 Million acres have been stolen from Herd Areas and from the Public.
    Blame should be aimed at the agencies that were responsible for capturing and removing those Horses from Public Lands in the first place and aimed at those who either made or pushed for the decisions to do so.
    How many Millions of tax dollars have gone into the pockets of those who have profited from removing our Wild Horses & Burros from our Public Lands?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The agencies responsible for removing those Wild Horses from their Congressionally Designated lands should send ISPMB a BIG donation (it’s OUR tax money anyway)….that would be BLM, USFS, Fish & Wildlife.
    Left in the wild, where they belong, the cost of feeding them would be ZERO

    Liked by 1 person

    • Louie, I don’t think those agencies are allowed or budgeted to donate money, but what they could do is offer to put these horses in legal areas which have been zero’d out, some for decades.

      What are the “other causes” of death mentioned and where is this information published? I haven’t seen any such claims. I also hope there is some accountability for all these donation streams and hope the funds actually help the horses in need!!!


      • the Sheriff’s FB page replied when I asked if there are horses still in critical condition. Their reply is yes, and Palomino Armstrong’s rescue was asked to be there today after the vet checks to help. She is in N. California she has a FB page as well.


  3. IcySpots, I agree. That’s PRECISELY what should be done. The Herd Areas that have been zeroed out should be given back.
    As to the “other causes” of death? I don’t think all of this facts are presently known or at least they haven’t been made public.


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