In partnership with the Bureau of Land Management, the LASD offered local residents an opportunity to add a unique four-legged friend to the family.

Majestic, intelligent and friendly. Horses and burros have built a relationship with humans of care and companionship that dates to the earliest times of human history. And it’s in preserving this relationship of care that residents were given a unique chance at the Jack Bones Equestrian Center in Castaic last week to add a new four-legged member to the family. 

“So this is our first annual wild Mustang and Burro adoption. It’s a partnership with the Bureau of Land Management BLM,” said Melissa Kelly acting director of the LA County Sheriff’s Department.

B.L.M. protects and manages over 170 herds of wild horses over 26 million acres of public land across 10 western states. And when these resources become scarce, officials round up the free-roaming animals and bring them to auctions hoping they will get into loving homes with those who qualify.

“Making sure that you have enough land, the fences are the right height. You know, we want to make sure that they go to good forever homes and that they don’t come back into the system,” said Kelly.

Twenty horses offered at the event went for $125, and the 10 burros were available at $85 a piece. A price which allowed experienced owners and potential new owners an affordable companion.

 “One of our neighbors has one, and we passed by it all the time, and we really liked it,” said Jerramy King, a person interested in adopting a burro.

The remaining animals will not be left in the dust as the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department hopes to establish a new rehabilitation program at the nearby Peter J. Pitchess detention center.

“Looking at trying to maybe long term do a training program with our inmates where you work on rehabilitating the horses as well as the inmates at the same time. So it’s a popular model in the prisons, and we want to try and bring it here to the county and with our incarcerated population,” said Kelly.

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