Sanctuary Update: July 2022

SANCTUARY UPDATE!! Hello to those of you who are new here! Welcome 🥰

I’m Kourtney, I have a passion for Mustangs- the misfits of the horse world, and a passion for empathetic, relationship based horse training & handling.

This is Deets- he is a 4 year old Mustang from Wyoming who was dumped in a kill pen! He came to us from Evanescent Mustang Rescue. He is honestly the sweetest horse I have ever met in my 23 years.

Life has a funny way of redirecting what we think we need to do and instead guiding us where we are meant to be, and with the arrival of Deets’ sweet soul came the realization that a large percentage of America’s Mustangs end up in kill pens. Not only Mustangs adopted from the BLM get dumped there, but also Mustangs that are rounded up by the Forest Service and rounded up from the various Reservations often go straight to public auction where many of them are bought by people who ship them straight to Mexico to be paid for their weight and made into meat.

At the very least the BLM provides some sort of care for the Mustangs they are in charge of after being rounded up- their Forest Service and Reservation counterparts aren’t so lucky! BLM Mustangs are branded so they can be recognized and Mustang advocates can step in and help save them when they land in kill pens, but USFS and Reservation horses are not branded or tracked and with that comes the inevitability of slaughter for large numbers of those horses.

Most USFS and Reservation herds are considered “stray livestock” and that is why they are not protected by any laws, however when these herds are genetically tested their bloodlines very often trace back to original Spanish herds, some of them showing Spanish blood in very large percentages! This is the case for the wild horses of Mesa Verde. (That mountain you see behind Deets & I is Mesa Verde)

There are currently 60 wild Mustangs in Mesa Verde, and the park will be rounding up every single horse in the late Summer of 2022 or 2023. Since we are local to Mesa Verde, and these horses have no protections, we feel that it is necessary for us to provide sanctuary for some of the older Mustangs of Mesa Verde.

 With that being said we will also be training & rehoming both Mesa Verde Mustangs, USFS, and BLM Mustangs alike in order to increase awareness of the plight of our Mustangs as well as save as many Mustangs from kill pen/slaughter situations as possible. We will be promoting new, kind training methods throughout each of the horses that we train’s journey from wild to willing partner. It is with your continued support that we embark on this journey, and endeavor to provide a new life for more Mustangs than any organization before. We have many years of hard work ahead, thanks for being a part of it 💪🏻

Our fencing project for the first pasture is coming along nicely and we are very close to finishing and being ready to bring in our first horses! This is the first of MANY fences to be built here at Nirvana. We have our generous donors to thank for this project, we are so grateful to be on this journey with you and we cannot wait to show you the first horses running free 🥰


In addition to rewilding Mustangs in our sanctuary, we also aim to promote the adoption of many Mustangs by showcasing what amazing partners they can be, especially when trained with empathetic, relationship based methods. This is Sundancer- an adopted 4 year old BLM Mustang. He will be with me forever, and I am documenting his entire journey from Wild to Willing Partner through a YouTube Series. The goal of this series is to bring awareness to how versatile and loyal Mustangs are once you win their trust, and promote a new and more emotionally conscious way of training horses that results in both human and horse blossoming! We will be using the methods shown to gentle and train other Mustangs that will later be up for adoption, and closely tracked throughout the duration of their lives by Nirvana Mustang Sanctuary. If you’re interested in checking out the series and watching Sundancer’s progress from untouched and scared to connected and brave, tap the link in my bio and click the YouTube link.


And last but not least, we have some awesome new merch available! 100% of the profit goes into the pot for more fencing and adoption/transportation fees, so we can bring in many Mustangs from kill pen situations and unprotected USFS/Reservation Mustangs before they hit public auction and end up shipping to slaughter. Nirvana Mustang Sanctuary is a registered 501c3 nonprofit, so your donations and merch purchases are completely tax deductible. Head to to check out our merch and support the future of Nirvana Mustang Sanctuary. Together we can make a difference for the horses we all love!

Until next time,

Kourtney Hardy