by Susan Michaud
Troublesome Horse Rescue and Rehabilitation was formed in September of 2005 at its current location on CR 2201 by the Pratt Family who owned the ranch. During the Pratts’ tenure as directors of Troublesome Horse Rescue and as owners of the ranch, their focus quickly became their therapeutic riding program, and horses were specifically rescued to be used in that program.
When Bethany and Fritz Aurin bought the ranch in 2020, they inherited the Troublesome Horse Rescue. The Aurins were long-time residents of Routt County where Fritz owned and operated the Smokehouse BBQ in Steamboat Springs for 22 years. Along with helping at the restaurant, Bethany worked for the school district during those years as a trainer for new bus drivers while driving a bus route of her own.
The current mission of the rescue, which has changed a bit under the Aurins’ new ownership, is to rescue, rehabilitate, rehome and redo, creating a nice circle of healing. Tracy DelliQuadri, secretary of the board of the rescue states, “Our goal is to adopt [out] horses that have been rehabilitated and then use that money to go rescue some more.” The Aurins have already improved the facility by renovating the indoor arena, which spans over an acre. They have 24 stalls with runs, so the potential of the rescue is substantial.
Bethany comes from a legacy of animal lovers/trainers/breeders and has always had animals to take care of. Larry the Camel, who has been seen in local parades and has frequented Kremmling schools and Cliffview, has been with Bethany since he was a baby. He is now 17 years old.
Joining Larry, the rescue has 1 horse (Clover) and 2 fainting goats who are ready for adoption now. Other rescued animals onsite include Camille, the camel; Johnny and June, slate turkeys; 2 LaMancha goats; 2 water buffalo calves, Diesel the horse, a long-term resident; Peaches the horse, who is not quite ready for adoption; Soldier the donkey and Belle the mini pony who are privately owned but were rescued from auction. There are several other privately owned rescue horses onsite as well.
Two graduates and recent success stories of the rescue are Chazzer and Cher. They arrived at the auction together from a desperate situation and were emaciated. The goal of the rescue at an auction is to outbid “kill buyers” who buy then resell horses to slaughterhouses. The rescue won the bid on Cher, but a kill buyer had won Chazzer. Through a course of miraculous events, including a snow storm that left both horses stranded on the front range, the kill buyer was convinced to sell Chazzer to the rescue for his cost. The two were reunited and journeyed to recovery together. Today, Chazzer works as a “schoolmaster” on the front range, teaching young new riders the art of horsemanship. Cher lives close by and visits Chazzer often. According to Bethany, she is competing as an “Eventer,” hunting and jumping in English style with her human.
In addition to their rescue and rehabilitation efforts, the rescue also wishes to support the community in as many ways as possible. Not only does Bethany want to restore the joy of the animals they rescue, but she also desires to be a source of education and outreach. The rescue welcomes groups and individuals, and according to Tracy, “We participated as a safe harbor during the Troublesome Fire, helping to trailer animals that had to be evacuated and providing refuge for animals (mostly llamas and chickens) that needed a place to stay. We’ve hosted two Steve Mantle horsemanship clinics; we provide weekly arena use for local 4-H programs and we’ve hosted other 4-H events like Goat Tying. We’ve also hosted the local Girl Scout troop to earn their Service to Animals badge. We also offer boarding for local horses that need a pasture space.” While hosting the Girl Scouts, Bethany was able to earn her Friends of Animals badge as well.
The rescue has also been added to the sheriff’s department’s list to assist in rescuing animals in danger or need.
When asked how they liked their new town of Kremmling, Tracy DelliQuadri, secretary of the board of the rescue remarked, “Kremmling has proven to be a small, friendly community where neighbors take care of each other, and we love how much the town supports their school and their community and children. The views are amazing, and the winters (except possibly last winter) are easier on the horses. The slower pace is also nice. We love how authentic and genuine the town is.”
Bethany, who has lived in the Steamboat Springs area since she was a youth, added, “I love the quirkiness of Kremmling, and I mean that in a good way. It reminds me of Steamboat in the 70s.”
The rescue is a family affair for Bethany and Fritz as they and their 2 adult daughters share in caring for the animals and all of the paperwork of the rescue. They have a small, dedicated group of volunteers and would welcome more who are interested in supporting them. They are also looking for board members that are motivated and active. They would love to have a board member that is internet/tech-savvy and another board member that has strong accounting skills to take over bookkeeping.
Funding is always an issue for non-profits, and the rescue is looking for donors as well. According to Tracy, “We are working on having a “click to donate” button on our Facebook page, where we are currently fundraising for HAY. We would also love to have monthly sponsors for our three current equine rescues (Diesel, Peaches, and Clover). Monthly care costs around $1000.”
Bethany added, “The facility is here ready and waiting, but our funding is lacking. In order to continue, we need to have an active board and a strong financial presence.”
The rescue desires to be an asset to Kremmling, providing education, therapy, and outreach to all ages. Future plans include additional fencing and parking, so it is safer for visitors and to continue with their rescue mission and community work with local clubs and organizations.
On their Facebook page, the Troublesome Horse Rescue and Rehabilitation’s “about” statement notes, “Every equine has a special purpose to fulfill, and it is our goal to discover this purpose. The Troublesome Horse Rescue is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Corporation dedicated to providing a safe harbor and care for equine animals in need.”
The rescue is located at 1049 County Road 2201 near Kremmling.
You can contact the rescue at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (970) 819-2058. Donations can be mailed to PO BOX 1621, Kremmling CO 80459.