Success Stories

Below are some stories from people who've adopted a rescue pet from DCH Animal Adoptions.

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Dear Lesley, Thank you for giving me my family earlier this year. They are wonderful and look after me very well.

I love to dig, chew anything and everything, yet also make them smile. The girls love to tease me with toys, lie on me and have also attempted to ride me at times, however I am always gentle and don't bite, although have nipped them when they consistently pull my tail!!

I have asked my mum to send some photos with this message so you can see how I've grown. I'll be turning the big 1 in February and can't wait. My dad says that I won't make it to one though if I keep digging holes in the backyard as big as an Olympic Pool!

I hope you are well and hope that we can catch up again one day soon.

Lots of love, Lewi xxoo

Louis was adopted on 31/7/09 after 1 month in foster care.



Hi Anne, I just wanted to let you know how Bindi (formerly Lucky) was going.

She settled in with us so quickly, it's like she has been here for a long time. She plays silly games every evening, and at this time of year, with all the beetles, the odd one gets inside and is her toy for hours. Max our big Manx boy, is fascinated with her and joins in with her playing frequently.

She sleeps on a variety of beds, spreading herself around, and loves nothing more than a good belly rub, and when she purrs, you can almost hear it at the other end of the house! Such a loud sound from a little girl.

Thanks Anne, for taking care of her until we came along, she is a beautiful little cat, with an awesome personality. She is already spoilt rotten, you should see the presents under the Christmas tree for her, (which she sleeps under, and plays with when she gets tired of the beetles) the boys went a little crazy.

Hope you have a great Christmas.

Thanks again.

Lisa, James, Morgan and Jesse.

Lucky was adopted on 20/12/09 after 1 month in foster care.


Hi megan, this is kimberlee, i contacted you about a month ago in regards to adopting 'panda' from michaela. turns out, when we went to see the kittens, loulabelle came straight to me and it was instant love

by the end of our visit the deposit was for her! loulabelle was ready to come home a couple of weeks ago, and she is doing great. she is so full of character, such a loving and playful girl.

i'm really writing to let you know how fantastic michaela has been, from my first phone call right until now. loulabelle is our first ever kitten so i've had so many (silly) questions and michaela has been very very patient with me. michaela has gone far and beyond with her assistance in every way that she can and words really cannot express my appreciation.

it is very obvious to anyone that would have the privilage of meeting loulabelle that she has been raised and nutured in a very loving environment. we bought her home well socialised, 100% litter trained and bouncing around with personality. what more could we have asked for? there is absolutely no way that we would have got such a happy and healthy kitten from a pet store. and i'd be crazy to think that they would have given me the service and help that michaela has given me.

thank you thank you thank you for dch organisation and the carers, these animals deserve a second chance at life, and without dch i would not have ever known loulabelle. these may seem like empty words, but i understand your time and effort that goes into rescuing these animals and rehoming them, and again words really cannot express how much i really do appreciate and applaud you and all those other carers who are saving these precious animals.

kind regards, kimberlee

Lulabelle was adopted on 24/1/10 after 2 months in foster care.

Zac and Nala

Zac and Nala

Hi Megan, Just thought you would like to know that Zac has now started to come out and wander round the house and look for tummy rubs and is bonding well with Nala ( we got her from Kelly), although she is still chasing him round trying to get him to play. He is much happier now and comes into the lounge room with us. I'm sending you a picture of them together on our bed. He really is a lovely big boy.

Regards, Pam

Zac and Nala were adopted together, Zac after 6months in foster care, Nala after 2 months.



Hi Amanda, Dynamite aka mighty - what a cute wee boy! He came into my life only a couple of weeks ago when I decided I needed a companion for my yearling warmblood Dulux who hated being left on his own whilst I was out training my arab Aladdin, for endurance riding. I decided to try to rescue a miniature or Shetland rather than buy one who already had a good home.

Within only two days of looking on rescue websites I found him. He was a perfect match as (although I wouldn't have chosen purely on colour) my ideal little miniature would have been a paint as this is a colour I love and have not owned as yet. I needed a boy as my warmblood is entire and I wanted something small so he didn't need much feeding. I looked on the wonderful DCH website and there, as if by magic, he was.

Within only a fifteen minute session in the round yard practicing some join up and Parelli playtime he had learnt to trot around and pop over a jump and turn to face me and change direction. All at liberty with no headcollar or lunge rein. He seems to enjoy his play time in the round yard and if I open up the round yard gate to train one of my other horses he barges past and trots around and pops over the jump and stops to look at me with an expression of how good am I? Is that what you wanted me to do? Im so much smarter than your arab or big warmblood! He is the cutest thing and I love him already and although he still shakes from fear sometimes from his past abuse and collapses if I touch his back legs - he is improving all the time.

I would like to thank Amanda and all the staff at DCH for doing such an amazing job giving up their valuable time to help animals that are in need of rescuing and also to the wonderful Sally who fostered Dynamite for some time before I took him on. What a wonderful job she did with Dynamite - she taught him to begin to trust humans again and showed patience and kindness when he needed it most.

I understand he had been broken in to saddle and harness - so Im not sure what Dynamite will end up doing with me - lots of exciting choices

but for now I'm very happy to have him as a companion pony in the paddock and a welcome member of our family to be loved and cherished and never abused again.


Dynamite came into DCH care in early 2011, he was

adopted on 14 February 2013.



Keto (now named Riley) faced an uncertain future before coming to DCH in early 2007 and is now loving his new life: Hi Amanda, Well it's been 6 months since Riley came into my life and he has had a huge impact on me. I had wanted to get a horse for a long time but the timing never seemed right. One night after viewing his ad several times, I decided to see him

I was quite excited as there was something about him that I Iiked and he stood out from all the other horses. I will never forget the moment when I first walked up to his yard and he stopped eating his food and came over for a pat! He won me over instantly with his friendliness.

I have been a little rusty getting back into the swing of things with horses but Riley didn't mind showing me a thing or two. Unfortunately we both can be stubborn and at times it has got me into trouble but in the end I've learnt to be patient and he usually comes around to what I'm wanting of him. We were lucky to meet some people who we ride out with in the national park and have a lot of fun. We even went on our first big trail ride a couple of months ago. The ride was organized with Nag Nag Nag trail rides which is a division of ATHRA. He went very well over all and I think enjoyed being out with all the other horses.

Recently he got very sick with colic and I thought I was going to lose him, after an emergency operation and loads of TLC he is almost back to his old self and I'm hoping to be back out riding in the next couple of months. It's been a tough few weeks for both of us, but I am so thankful that he's come through this major challenge.

He has had to learn a lot in the last six months considering he was only recently broken in and had limited exposure to the outside world. He has done very well, is great in traffic and with other horses. I often wonder what I used to do with my weekends before him - it certainly wasn't as much fun as it is now. I am grateful that he is in my life, he fills a big hole that I've been missing for so long. Thanks again to you and Debbie for all your help. Best Regards Debra

Keto was adopted in August 2009 after 2.5 years in foster care



Chunk is a beautiful 16.2hh standardbred gelding who was surrendered to DCH in 2008 as a 5 year old when his racing career had finished. He's a lovely gentle boy and was easily trained to saddle; he was rehomed in early 2009 to a fantastic home in sydneys south west Hey Amanda,

It has been a while since I emailed you regarding Chunky so I figured I would you let you know how his first Christmas was...

On Christmas morning I gave them all the day off and took them to see what Horse Santa had bought them... They all got new Summer rugs, luv a lick liccorice, halters, (Queenie got a miracle windsucking collar) and chunky got raisin toast and iced tea (his favourite).

It is amazing me each and every day to see how well our Chunky boy is coming along. My instuctor couldn't believe, actually she was in amazement, the other day when we were working on his overtracking in a walk and making him pick up his feet in a trot. She couldn't see how an ex pacer/trotter has such a beautiful trot. Even his canter is a dream. It is easy to sit to and he just gives it his all. He is very spoilt and I cant believe how far he has come.

We have Chunky cantering from a standstill and working off the leg, still self flex's and is even learning how to bow (party trick). Everyone compliments us on what a beautiful and magnificent looking horse he is, and how gorgeous his confirmation is under saddle with his impressive long trot. We are enquiring into putting him into further dressage training to teach him to extend and collect his gaits. I also competed on him in a mock up dressage day and walked away with a 137/200 which was good enough to place us at 3rd for the day in the Preliminary 1A (the EFA test).

I don't know what we would do without chunky in our lives. He sure is the male character the paddock was lacking. Because of Chunky and his easy goingness, he has helped to teach my mare that there is nothing wrong with the float and there is nothing to be scared of. He is also becoming an avid water baby... He has learnt the technique of Stop, Drop and Roll...

I have also started to give a little girl 2 doors down lessons, she has learnt to rise to his trot on the lunge and loves playing red light, green light on him even though the game goes forever. We really couldn't have asked for a better pony so to speak than Chunky... he fits into our lives perfectly. He was the missing piece of the puzzle and you can be guaranteed that he has found his FOREVER home with us....

Thanks Amanda and Debbi for the amazing Chunky we have had now for a WHOLE YEAR!!! Anne-Maree, Lee, Chunky and Queenie!

adopted on 03012009 after 10 months in foster care



To DCH Horses, About 2 years ago I bought from you a Chestnut and white pinto gelding Rust N Thunder. He was very timid and nervous but we have spent many hours retraining him and quietning him down, we have registered him with the Pinto Horse assoc of NSW and I thought I would send you these pics of him. My God daughter Jessica rides and cares for him fulltime and has begun showing him this season with great success. The pics I am sending are from the Pinto State Titles in Nov 08. Thanks to all you guys for helping us to find such a great little pony who we love dearly. Rachelle Knight and Jessica Stuart

The Adoption

Rachelle and I went and saw Rusty on a warm sunny day over in Sydney. He was standing in the paddock and when his carer tried to catch him he ran away in fright. We waited by the fence until his carer caught him and led him towards us. He was very nervous and scared and started to shiver and move away from us. We patted him on the neck until he calmed down then led him around the paddock a little. After a while he let us put on the saddle and bridle and we rode him calmly around, the more time we spent talking to him and coaxing him gently the more he calmed down.

We decided we would take him and would come back in a few weeks time and visit him again and pick him up. Rachelle breeds Pintos and that's why she was so attracted to Rusty for me to have as a riding and show pony. A few very very slow weeks passed as I was so excited to go and pick him up. We caught him and put his new rug on we had bought him, loaded him on the float and took him home. He travelled home really well as it was a fair drive from Sydney as we live in the Southern Highlands.

Once we got him home we spent weeks just teaching him ground work like leading, patting, brushing, picking his feet up and just generally getting to know him. As he progressed and was not nervous around us we began riding him and training him for hacking. He was a quick learner and responded so well to our calm and friendly training techniques. I also learnt so much through training Rusty, which was nice cause we learnt together.

We registered him with the Pinto Horse Association of NSW and last year (2008) we started showing him and I took him to the Pinto State Titles at Cobbitty. He behaved so well, he went in led event and he won 3rd our of 5, we did a few hacking events and he behaved so well, then in the afternoon we competed in the sporting which he won numerous ribbons. I have also sent you some photos from this show with both of us looking very shmick if I do say so myself. Rusty is the most wonderful friend and companion I could ever ask for and we have both learnt so much from each other along the way. Thanks you DCH Rescue for allowing me to have the pony I always wanted and who I'll always love.


Rusty in Foster Care March 2007

Rusty was adopted in July 2007 after 5 months in foster care.

Duke and Hanna

Duke and Hanna

Duke's Story

Duke is a 16hh, 6 years grey gelding we rescued in 2006, he was on his way to the doggers if we hadn't. He was in great condition, well cared for and an easygoing boy. So after the usual worming, vaccination, teeth, feet roster and some test rides in the paddock and in the local area he was up for adoption.

We received many enquiries due to him being such an impressive boy with such potential, but as many of you know we wait for the absolute right home for a horse, certainly not 'first come first served', so along came Hanna and her family, looking for a young, athletic, good looker just like Duke! They were experienced with horses, had a lot of love to give and were altogether a great home for him, so arrangements were made to view him, they liked him and arranged to buy him shortly afterwards.

Duke is now living in the lap of luxury in North Sydney, doted on and loved, and wants for nothing!. His new owners have since found out through tracing his brands that he was a race horse until just a few weeks before being rescued (we didn't know that when DCH'ers Amanda, Louisa and Colin rode him out along roads and in 10ha paddocks on a loose rein in his test phase.. he was just so quiet, it actually took much convincing to even get him to trot!) he won about $76, 000 in prize money! His father was an American import named Azzaam

and out of all of Azzaam's offspring, Duke is always listed first when they say sire of 103 runners and 39 winners.He raced 43 times and in fairly good ones at that

his father had Secretariat bloodlines. He raced against a couple of Gai Waterhouse's horses and won a fair few times, too

Below is an email from his owner Hanna, who's kind enough to send us updates on how he's going, we love to see these horses who once had such an uncertain future doing so well!

Hey Amanda, It's been a while since I wrote, so I thought I'd update you on Duke's progress since my last email! Dukey and I have been going trail-riding regularly now with my sister and her horse -- he's absolutely fantastic with cars/motorbikes/kids/trucks/scary horse-eating monsters. I'm able to open and close gates off him, walk over bridges, ride on the main road... The list is endless! He's just such a reliable horse, even when I go riding on my own.

I'm still waiting for my first fall off him! He's now comfortably jumping 50-60 cms and we're hoping to compete in a jumping show in June -- it'll be his first show. I originally planned to take him to a hack show on the 25th of April, but it felt a little too soon for him. I bet my bottom dollar he takes the show scene like a pro, though.

He's still very, very spoilt and loved by the whole brother's new favourite thing! He's especially fond of pears and my leftover toast (or whatever he can get his mouth around...). His new favourite thing to do is get his whole body into the feed room (no joke) while I'm not looking, and then I have to squish under him to push him back out again -- still very much the cheeky man. :)

I just love him so much, I don't know what I'd do without his adorable face hanging over the fence, waiting for me when I get home from school. He's assured a forever home with me, you can rest easy! :) Have included a few photos so you can see what we've been getting up to...

Thanks so much, Hanna

Due to a change of circumstance Duke was re-surrendered to DCH in 2009; he was then re-adopted and given another chance at a wonderful life by Brenda and her family. In July 2009 Brenda writes:

Hi Amanda and Nadia, I've finally got the chance to let you know how Duke's going and share some pics. First thing we did together was to go out on a trail ride with some friends. Duke was great, he was the best behaved horse and seemed to really enjoy himself. We went through some creeks, some bushy areas, past some roos and motorbikes and he was perfect for the entire ride. Our weekly lessons are also going really well. Duke is enjoying them and his fitness is slowly improving. My instructor had a mock-dressage day for students that wanted to be judged by a local dressage judge without the who-ha of things that go on with the real thing. It was only the 2nd time I had ridden him and we scored 60% in a preparatory test and I forgot the test half way through, so I was really chuffed with our result. We will keep our fingers crossed that we will get some nice weather soon so that we can enjoy some more rides out. Brenda

Duke was adopted in May 2006 after 4 months in foster care.



Hi Megan

I just thought I would send you a quick email on Ruby, a Staffy x Kelpie that I adopted from you 2 weeks ago.

Ruby is doing well, we've both fallen in love with each and she is extremely spoilt. She's adapted so well to her new surroundings and is slowly gaining some confidance. She starts puppy pre school in the next week or so at the local vet who she seems to have taken a liking too

phew! She's gaining weight too

the vet is very happy with her progress

1.75kgs in 2 weeks!!

Anyway, thank you for letting me give Ruby a new life

she is very loved by her new family and friends.

I've attached a picture of Ruby playing the day I picked her up from Amanda

we've not had any tears so far!



Ruby was

adopted on 29/09/2009 after 1 month in foster care.