Branded Mare Star of Taffy Missing From Nebraska Quarter Horse Farm

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Star of Taffy is being looked for by Stolen Horse International
Star of Taffy, an AQHA registered mare missing since June 12, has a star and snip and a brand on her right hip.

We all have patterns in our lives that repeat. You are here when you want to be there, there when you want to be here, traveling for business when you want to be home, home when you need to be traveling, which sometimes cuts into your favorite activity: saddling up your favorite horse and riding. What happens when we finally find time to ride and we open the door to the barn to halter your horse and it is not there?

Stolen Horse International is trying to make sense out of why so many horses are still coming up missing in the United States, especially after processing three reports regarding missing and stolen AQHA horses in three states.

With all of this disorder and mayhem that many of us experience in our daily lives we forget to take care of, or don’t even think about protecting ourselves against theft.  The recession has spurred cut backs, layoffs and, now, increased theft.

Star of Taffy, better known as Star, is an 18-year-old Liver Chestnut AQHA Quarter Horse mare taken from the Frink Quarter Horse Farm on June 12, 2009, in Lincoln, Nebraska. The theft left her owner Susan Frink, few clues of what happened to her horse.  Star has a brand on her right hip that has a 4F with an arrow underneath pointing toward her head.

The family learned about Stolen Horse International (SHI), a nonprofit organization that helps owners spread the word about missing and stolen horses via their international NetPosse email network. An IDAHO Alert (the equine version of an AMBER Alert for missing children) was issued with Star’s information and picture to NetPosse volunteers.

“We’ve learned time is of the essence in recovering a stolen horse,” says Debi Metcalfe, president and founder of Stolen Horse International. “Within a few days, any stolen horse can be transported across the United States and sold at auction several times, or even transported across the border into Canada or Mexico, where horse slaughter is still legal.”

Once an IDAHO Alert is issued for a stolen or missing horse, NetPosse volunteers distribute a customized flyer and webpage to thousands of other people, via their online and email contacts and list groups. The flyer is also available at www.netposse.com, so that anyone can print out the flyer and post it in their area. SHI recommends tack and feed stores, auction barns, restaurants, and convenience stores; in short, anywhere that area people, and potential witnesses, congregate.

After Star’s IDAHO Alert was issued Frick contacted Stolen Horse International to offer a reward for information that leads to the return of the horse, hoping that the money would result in the quick recovery of her mare.

“I would like to add $1000.00 reward for the return of Star to us,” said Susan in an email to Debi Metcalfe. “Is there any chance you can get that added to your website?”

Shortly thereafter the webpage and flyer was updated and you can print a flyer and read more information about Star on the NetPosse.com site.

Horse theft is a crime that is alive and thriving in the U.S. today. It is estimated that thousands of horses are missing each year, and thieves often take horse tack, vehicles, or other items from the same location. With the help of volunteers through NetPosse.com, many horses are recovered, and there is hope for victims like the Susan Frink and her family.

Stolen Horse International is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. SHI was founded in 1998 by Debi Metcalfe after she and her family spent nearly a year trying to locate Idaho, their spotted Racking horse. Idaho was recovered when a flyer they had posted at a convenience store resulted in the tip they needed.

SHI provides theft education, outreach, and recovery services that are available at the SHI website: www.netposse.com.

Read on for tips on preventing horse theft.

16 COMMENTS

  1. I feel so bad for them! I wonder how much it hurts & how scared you can be when you walk into the stable & find your horse missing with no trace of where or how she went. Theres always gonna be that “what if” feeling & theres this wrenching gut feeling that never goes away. You never know if your gonna see them again & there all you think about. You think you see & hear them all the time & you search night & day. I really hope they can find her safe & sound. How could anyone want to steal a horse away from its loving owners & home?

  2. It take a sick person to do this especially when there are so many “free” horses out there or running loose w/o a home.

  3. So many people confuse the two totally separate issues of stealing horses and dropping them off. It is like two different camps motivated by entirely different needs. Please take the time to help Susan Frink by posting a flyer in your area and then by sending this story to your friends. Don’t forget to protect your horses and equipment with ID and farm signs. You can find them at Stolen Horse International. If you have any questions or concerns, we would love to hear them. FYI: Another stolen horse was recovered this morning in MI. Sign up to get our alerts and newsletter to learn more about what is really going on in the horse world concerning theft, missing horses and disaster related situations.

  4. Thank you for helping on the Stolen Horse. It is a Big Problem that is not being addressed.
    Please continue helping us where it (hurts) helps.

  5. Thank you so very much for doing this story, a lot of people don’t realize that horse theft occurs often in this day and age. As the owner of a horse rescue, we always check any new horses being donated to us against those that have been reporeted missing and i think stolen horse international provides a wonderful service!! I wish there was more media coverage, the more people who know, the more people who might just happen across a missing horse…thanks again for doing this piece.

  6. Netposse-THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR EVERYTHING YOU DO!!! HorseChannel, thank you so much for the attention! This type of media coverage is another reason why I LOVE HORSECHANNEL.COM!

  7. Thank you HorseChannel.com for helping to spread the word. As a member of NetPosse.com, I know that it is vital to use every means of alerting the public when a horse goes missing. Your support and media coverage is very much appreciated. Horse owners everywhere must band together (become a herd!) and stop horse theft. Thanks for your support. You are needed!

  8. Thank you for your support in publishing this story and information about Stolen Horse International/Netpossse.
    A vital part of this network is getting the information out and spread as far as possible quickly. The more websites alerts are included on the better the chances of recovery.
    Thank you.

  9. Thank you for posting this information and getting the word out to help find this horse. THIS MUST BE STOPPED FROM HAPPENING…… I would like to think that law enforcement is doing more than writing out a report, filing it and forgetting it. I have alot of respect for law enforcement but I think they should be able to have more power to do more to solve cases.. They are limited on what they can do for us in these cases..

  10. Thank you so much for highlighting the continuing existance of horse theft in America by telling Star’s story. Also, thanks for the information on NetPosse, an organization thit is dedicated to recovering stolen or strayed horses.
    Horse theft must be stopped.

  11. Just wanted to thank Horse Channel for assisting SHI in the search for Star Taffy owned by Susan Fink. This organization is so special & work so hard to find everyones horses that some thief has chosen to call his own. Your publicity was a wonderful contribution to them.

  12. THANK YOU for passing on this info, and for reminding us every now and then that there is an organization there trying to help. Stealing a horse is not like stealing someone’s possession – it’s more like abducting a family member!

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