Horse Owner FAQ

METS offers several services to horse owners including phone consultation, equine assessments, marketing assistance, facilitating placement in the METS Network, and providing end-of-life options. Be sure to read the pages under the “Services” menu of the website, then submit an application or give us a call.

Horses in transition are every age, color, breed, and condition. The program, however, focuses on transitioning horses that might be considered at-risk, those having a market value less than $2,500. Therefore, if owners wish to sell their horse for more than $2,499, they will not be eligible for METS assistance.

No. There are other resources in the state and nationally to assist owners with short-term financial hardships. METS will refer owners to these resources.

METS can, however, provide financial assistance for owners who transition their horse through the program if they demonstrate financial need.

Yes! METS will work with owners to transition any horse of any capability, including companion-only horses. Horses that cannot be ridden, however, can be more difficult to place.  METS can provide you with tips and tools to give your horse the best chance to have a successful transition.

The amount of time it takes to place a horse depends on many different factors, but the METS staff will work to find your horse a safe option as quickly as possible. Your horse may be placed more quickly if it is updated on all care records.

Click here to download the METS Application Form.  Complete the form in its entirety and email it to the METS office at Director@mdequinetransition.org.  If you have questions or need assistance completing the form, call 410-489-7475.

Once an application has been submitted to METS, a staff member will contact you to schedule an assessment of your horse. Staff travel long distances to visit horses, so please be mindful of their time and provide at least 24-hours notice if you have to cancel.

An assessment session typically includes a general health and soundness assessment, a behavioral assessment, a comprehensive verbal history provided by the owners, a riding assessment if applicable and appropriate. Due to liability issues METS staff cannot ride the horse. The assessment will be an observation of the horse being ridden by the owner or other rider.

If the horse is well-groomed and in good condition, the staff member can also take photographs and video for marketing purposes. Photos and videos increase your horse’s chances of being transitioned more quickly.

Following the assessment, owners will be presented a list of options based on preliminary results.

No. You can choose any or none of the options presented.  The decision is entirely up to you.

Your horse is not required to be up-to-date on all vaccinations, but having complete updated health records will increase the likelihood of a quick transition. If you need financial assistance to update your horse’s veterinary care, METS can help. Your horse will be required to have a negative Coggins before it can be transported to a new location.

METS will work to assist you with transitioning as many horses as possible. The METS Director can help you determine the best plan of action.

Because METS is a mobile service and does not have a facility to provide direct care, METS is unable to take ownership of a horse. Instead, METS has developed an extensive network of facilities and equine professionals who have interest in accepting horses through METS. If a match is found for the horse, ownership will be transferred directly from the owner to the METS Network member.

Transitions Sites within the METS Network are licensed through the Maryland Horse Industry Board (MHIB), which guarantees they have properly equipped and maintained facilities. Network members also agree to never take a horse to auction or slaughter, and include no auction/slaughter clauses in their rehoming agreements.

If you choose to sell your horse to someone outside the METS Network, even if you use METS’ marketing tools, there is no guarantee the home will be safe. METS can provide you with a list of questions to ask potential owners to help you decide if the home is the right fit.

METS will assist you with identifying someone in the METS network who is interested in your horse. You will make the final decision whether or not to transfer ownership to the Network member (or any other individual) based on your discussions and meetings with that person. Therefore, you can gather as much information as you wish about your horse’s new home.

No, you are under absolutely no obligation to give/sell your horse to anyone. The decision is 100% up to you.

The majority of Network members are located in Maryland. However, METS does have Transition Sites in other states. The ultimate goal is to find your horse a good home. If that home happens to be outside of Maryland, the option will be presented to you.

Your horse can be removed from the program at any time with no penalty; however, fees for services, if any, are non-refundable. If you change your mind after you have signed paperwork to transfer ownership of the horse, the decision to return the horse to you falls solely to the new owner. METS strongly recommends that you be absolutely sure you are ready to transition your horse before signing any transfer of ownership forms.

Congratulations on finding your horse a new home! 

Please notify the METS staff when your horse has been transitioned so that any advertisements can be removed. The staff may also send you a brief survey to get your feedback about the METS program and information about the placement. This information will help the METS leadership evaluate and improve the program.

Fees for service depend on whether an owner wishes to donate or sell their horse.

Phone consultations and the METS online resources are available to all horse owners free of charge.  Owners who wish to sell their horse for $2500 or more are not eligible for additional services.

For horses valued at less than $2500, METS staff will travel to the horse’s location, conduct a thorough equine assessment, and provide owners with a list of recommended options free of charge. Fees will be charged for other services such as marketing, transportation, facilitation of Network placement, and end-of-life procedures. Financial assistance is available for owners who demonstrate financial hardship.

No. All fees are required to be paid up front and will not be refunded.