9/21/2014

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Problem Solvers

50 horses in jeopardy of being forced out of new home

50 horses in jeopardy of being forced out of new home
RAINIER, Wash. -- 50 horses are in jeopardy of being forced out of their new home as the Problem Solvers have learned the Second Chance Ranch, which rescues horses, needs rescuing itself.

The ranch is home to, among others, many thoroughbreds who retire from racing at Emerald Downs. But now their retirement home where they rehab, get adopted or transition into a new career is trying to cross a financial finish line.

Their lease is up, and Second Chance's Katie Merwick says the revenue sources she was counting on have dried up.

"It's a lot of responsibility," Merwick said.

She's tried for month to raise the $100,000 needed for one year's mortgage.

"We've hit so many dead-ends -- this is why I'm coming to you for help; we're out of places to go for this," she said.

Merwick insists a donated one year mortgage payment would save the ranch for life and the 50 horses she cares for. Every horse here trained to race, but most never saw the track. But some of the greats are here, like Washington's 'No Giveaway' who went from dead last to first to win the Longacres Mile in 2005.

Last year, all the horses moved into the Rainier ranch -- a move 28 years in the making. It's a year-round facility with plenty of pastures, a barn and an indoor arena for winter workouts, endless feed, vet care, trainers and love.

"It is such an honor to serve them," Merwick said. "When people say, 'Do you own that horse?' I say, 'he owns me.' "

The property owner is willing to be flexible with the terms -- evening cutting the mortgage in half. But he can't give it away.

"Without it, I don't even want to think about will happen," Merwick said.

Two of the horses from Second Chance will be at Emerald Downs for the Longacres Mile parade on Aug. 18.

If' you'd like to help Second Chance, you can donate through our Problem Solvers fund.
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