2021 Year In Review 
Dear Friend of the Sanctuary,

As I sit down to write my first message to you, I realize that, in my 22 years on the Sanctuary’s Board of Directors, there has never been a more challenging yet more exciting time. I am thankful to be shoulder to shoulder with a talented and creative board, our committed volunteers and our faithful donors.  

Inspired by the happy, healthy mustangs and burros (who have no idea what a pandemic is), we are finding creative solutions to the economic shifts brought on by COVID-19. I doubt the mustangs have missed the trail rides or noticed the stillness at camp. But we are keenly aware of the two lost ride seasons, cancelled open houses and the effect of closing our gate.  

I hope this letter gives you a glimpse of how we are doing, despite our program cutbacks and inability to welcome visitors to enjoy the horses.  

We strive daily to improve our care of the wild horses and burros, and to enable the horse/human connection to change lives – all while honoring the Sanctuary’s 45-year history and Dianne’s legacy. I’d like to highlight some of our accomplishments and needs.

Key to ensuring the health and welfare of the horses and burros is our stewardship of the nearly 5,000 acres that sustain them. We have improved the native grasses on the property through seeding and rotating the areas where the horses feed. We have a great start, but much remains to be done. Check out the article on the cross-fencing that is integral to the seeding program.  

For a fifth year running, the Sanctuary and our amazing horses allowed a passionate group of people to interact with untouched mustangs and build trust-based relationships. We also hosted a group of mental health professionals who learned to engage young wild horses to help trauma survivors. I hope you are inspired by the articles on Reaching Out to the Untouched Horse and Relationship Logic Immersion Training. More clinics are scheduled, and we continue to seek opportunities that allow the mustangs’ magic to heal people.

This year’s drought presented challenges as our springs and ponds dried up, requiring creative opening and closing of gates, and shuffling of horses and burros (thank goodness for our committed volunteers). To make matters worse, the pump which had serviced our well for decades broke, beyond repair, requiring a dip into reserves for an expensive emergency replacement. On the bright side, we are confident that the new pump will supply the horses with water for many years.  

Our progress in eliminating reproduction on the Sanctuary has allowed us to accept a few unadoptable mustangs each year. Last summer, we welcomed 2 geldings from Goshute Herd Management Area in Nevada. Their 10-year journey to roam free again is a great read.

We are grateful to have accomplished some important projects in this second year of unprecedented financial hardship. With your help, we continue to provide a haven for wild horses that have nowhere else to go. I look forward to the future with trust and confidence that, with the support of caring people like you, we will always be able to take care of our wild horses and burros.  

Hoping you are well and happy.  

Elizabeth Palmer
President, Wild Horse Sanctuary
Welcome Shaman and Chevayo!
Meet our two newest residents, brothers Shaman and Chevayo. They were removed from the Goshute Herd Management Area in Nevada in 2011 and lived for a time at a nearby prison inmate training program.

Since neither was adopted via Internet auction, they were both slated for long term government holding. A prison sentence of their own. 3 Sisters Equine Refuge and Renegade Equine stepped in and arranged for them to land safely with them, in Bend, Oregon.  

They were well cared for, loved deeply, and changed the lives of the humans who have the pleasure of knowing them. Hopes were high for getting them gentled, trained, and adopted. After three full years of professional training, these boys made it clear that being domestic horses was not for them. For a number of years Shaman and Chevayo were residents of Renegade Equine. More recently, it became clear they needed space to run and be free again.  

Through networking and donations, they arrived at the Wild Horse Sanctuary in August of this year. 3 Sisters Equine Refuge , Renegade Equine, and the Wild Horse Sanctuary are forever grateful for all who helped get them here – living wild and free once again.  
Make a Difference
In the Life of a Horse in Need
Donate to the Wild Horse Sanctuary
 Relationship Logic Immersion Training

Once again, the Wild Horse Sanctuary hosted a group of mental health professionals from around the country as they participated in a private Natural Lifemanship (NL) Relationship Logic Immersion Training from September 15 through 19. As the original Trauma-Focused Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (TF-EAP™), Natural Lifemanship is a process for building connected relationships.  

The focus is on understanding how the brain develops through primary relationships, how trauma and toxic stress affects brain development, and how to build connected relationships that heal. Natural Lifemanship trainings are intimate gatherings of passionate people who serve others.  

The Sanctuary offers NL trainees the one-of-a-kind experience of building a connected relationship with a wild horse. Guided and supported by NL professionals, participants worked with five young mustangs from the Sanctuary to learn the Natural Lifemanship model.

Hosting the NL training raises funds to support the wild and horses who call the Sanctuary home, offers a unique experience for attendees, and builds new friendships for the mustangs and the WHS. And, five young mustangs were adopted by NL participants!  

Natural Lifemanship has two dates scheduled for trainings in 2022. Check their website soon for details.

Reach Out to Horses (ROTH)
Returns to the Wild Horse Sanctuary
Anna Twinney’s Reach Out to the Untouched Horse Clinic was held on-site at the Wild Horse Sanctuary for the fifth year in a row from August 23–29, 2021. Anna thoughtfully paired 10 young, wild mustangs with 10 clinic participants and the teams spent seven full days learning the language of Equus. Anna’s clinics are designed to give participants the unique opportunity to learn the methodologies and concepts necessary to fully understand and work in the language of the horse. Created by Anna herself, this hands-on approach allows participants to gain insight and understanding into the mind of their horse, learn how to leave the one-way conversation behind, and build a true connection and trust-based relationship with their equine partner.

Days were long but fulfilling. For the humans, it was a week of learning, growing, and experiencing the mustangs in their natural state of being. For the young mustangs, it was an amazingly positive first experience with humans. The WHS is grateful for Anna and the people who worked with the horses to give them such a positive first step into the domestic world. We are thrilled to announce that four of the mustangs found their forever homes, too!  

To learn more about ROTH and Anna herself, visit Anna will return to the WHS in August, 2022 for the sixth time. Stay tuned for details.
Sponsors needed
The horses and burros that live out their lives here depend upon the
support of our wonderful sponsors to pay for food, mineral supplements, safe fencing, and basic veterinary care. If you would like to make a difference in the life of a wild horse, please consider a tax-deductible sponsorship.

Learn about Sponsorship
Creating a Sustainable Future
At the WHS, our goal is to create a healthy and sustainable environment. One way to achieve this goal is maintaining the natural landscape by seeding and cross-fencing.

Cross fencing allows for rotational grazing and range improvement. The range is divided into sections and seeded for spring grazing. Horses are rotated and allowed to graze in one area, while another area grows or rests.  

Benefits of cross fencing:
  • Increases the quality and yield of pasture land
  • Allows for better distribution of manure nutrients throughout the year
  • Creates natural grazing for more animals
  • Saves money on seasonal hay costs
  • Healthier horses and burros
  • Creates safe spaces for incoming special needs horses if needed
  • Allows dedicated pasture land for aging horses so they do not have to compete for food
We currently have five cross-fenced areas, but more is needed. Your donations will help us create a more environmentally sustainable future for the WHS.


Reuse and recycling are part of our daily operations. Lumber, fencing, and other building materials are salvaged and re-purposed. Old equipment is maintained and repaired, and at the end of it’s life, sold for metal salvage. We strive for zero waste environment.
Christmas Ideas for the Horse Lover
Show your support of the Wild Horse Sanctuary by shopping in our online store. Calendars, logo t-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, water bottles, tote bags, ball caps and visors come in a wide array of colors and sizes.   

Reasonably priced $10-$38
Shop the Wild Horse Sanctuary Store
VOLUNTEER   Whether you are a horse person, love outdoor projects, or like working on ranch projects, we would love to hear from you. We welcome short and long term commitments — many projects can be completed in a day. Our volunteers are from all over California. contact
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