'A real feeling of accomplishment': Man buys golf course, turns it into a rehab ranch for horses

What started as a hobby is now helping older horses that few people want.


A man who recently bought a golf course in Kansas City has turned it into a horse rehabilitation ranch.

"We bought it just because it was an interesting property," said Fred Snow, of Lake Georgia Sue Horse Rehabilitation.

Snow said it is not a charity.

"We're not even a business. This is a variety of people coming together with a hobby," he said.

That hobby is helping older horses that few people want.

"Many of the horses didn't come in in bad shape. They just hadn't been ridden in 12 or 15 years," Snow said.

Snow, of Ottawa, bought the old golf course seven years ago.

"Most of it runs on volunteer power," he said. "We have volunteers from 9 years old to 90 years old."

Snow described them as people who love horses and want to give them new life.

Last year, 52 horses came through the gates all but five found permanent matches.

"Most of the horses that we end up with would have gone to an auction and from the auction to a kill pen," Snow said.

He said he has a hard time thinking about that.

"We get a lot of calls, 'Would you take this horse?' We've never said no," Snow said.

For some, it is an end-of-life home.

"Most of them were senior horses that came to the end of their life. They didn't have anywhere to go and they came here," Snow said.

For other horses, it is a rehab and a new home.

"A real feeling of accomplishment. It's a feeling of relief for the horse, too," Snow said. "You learn to love the horses and actually fall in love with them while they are here."