Sanctuary at Home Scheme – FAQs

Do I live within your rehoming area?

The Mare and Foal Sanctuary is looking for Sanctuary at Home Carers from across the South West of England.   This includes the counties of Bristol, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire.  We’ll also consider homes in South Wales and Hampshire.

Can I rehome if I am under 18?

You must be 18 years or over to become a Sanctuary at Home Carer.  An adult must apply on behalf of a child or children who would like to become a Sanctuary at Home carer for a rescued pony like Fenton.

Can I rehome a horse if I have no equine experience?

We welcome both novice and experienced Sanctuary at Home Carers and all those in between, because our horses and ponies have all been rescued and have their different needs too.

Will I own the horse?

Horses and ponies rehomed through our Sanctuary at Home scheme always remain in the ownership of The Mare and Foal Sanctuary in order that we can safeguard the ongoing welfare of the equine.

Can my horse live out 24/7?

Horses that live out must have access to good shelter and the ability to stay warm and dry in extreme weather. As with all horses though, it will depend on their individual needs.    Your first step is to complete an application form and tell us as much as you can about you, the sort of horse or pony you are looking for and the sort of home you can offer so we can find a special match for you.

Can I keep the horse on its own?

We only rehome our horses in an environment where they will have equine company in the same paddock. Horses are herd animals and interaction with other horses is very important to them and allows them to exhibit beneficial natural behaviour.

How often will you visit us?

Our home visits can be over the phone and in person.  The frequency of these depends on your individual circumstances.  For example, if you are a new Sanctuary at Home Carer, we will visit after four to six weeks to ensure you are all settling in.   As part of the application process, we will provide more information on what you can expect.

You also have access to friendly advice and support from our dedicated team whenever you need it.

What happens on a home visit?

Your home visit will usually last 20-30 minutes. Our staff member will need to see the horse for a short health check as well as any grazing, stabling or field shelters they have access to. You will be able to ask questions as well as tell us how you’ve been getting on together.

What happens if I need to move house?

You will need to keep us updated with your new address and contact details so we can contact you regarding your Sanctuary horse. If you want to move your horse to a new premises, (whether on a temporary or permanent basis) you will need to let us know in advance and they should not be moved to premises we have not seen.

Will my horse come with its tack and rugs?

In most cases, we don’t provide tack and rugs, unless the horse or pony has a medical reason that requires specialist equipment.

Can you deliver the horse to me?

Our Sanctuary at Home Carers are responsible for arranging all transport, but if you feel you will have any difficultly with this, please let us know during the application process.

Do I need public liability insurance?

Having suitable public liability insurance is necessary to safeguard you against any potential claims resulting from the actions of any horses in your care. This is the only type of insurance we ask you to have in place. Anything further – such as veterinary insurance  is your choice to put in place if you wish.

Who is responsible for veterinary fees?

You’ll need the ability to commit to any routine or unexpected vet costs.  There may be individual horses or ponies we need to rehome where we will provide some financial assistance towards veterinary costs.  This is at our discretion and based on the needs of the horse or pony, and we would discuss this with you during the application process.

Do I need to provide a reference?

Horses and ponies rehomed through our Sanctuary at Home scheme always remain in the ownership of The Mare and Foal Sanctuary in order that we can safeguard the ongoing welfare of the equine.  Your reference assists us in determining your suitability to become a Sanctuary at Home Carer.

What happens if I can no longer keep the horse?

Becoming a Sanctuary at Home Carer means rehoming horses and ponies from our charity and helping provide a sanctuary at home for as many years as you can on a loan basis.

Many of our Sanctuary at Home Carers tell us this gives them peace of mind should their circumstances change, and they can no longer provide sanctuary at home. The horse or pony can come back to us if they ever need to, and we ask for as much notice as possible should this situation occur.

Do you charge a rehoming fee?

Apart from a refundable £30 deposit for an equine passport, there is no charge to rehome horses and ponies through our Sanctuary at Home scheme.  By becoming a Sanctuary at Home Carer, you join a group of very special people who support The Mare and Foal Sanctuary in the most amazing way.