1. School of Equine Studies
  2. Donate a Horse

Donate a Horse| How To

The Lake Erie College Equestrian Program relies on the generous donation of horses by trainers and owners.

We accept horses from the walk-trot-canter level through advanced dressage, hunters, jumpers and western horses including reiners. We are in need of horses that are fit and sound, well trained in their discipline and under 18 years old. Our school horses generally work one to two hours a day, four to five days a week. We do not accept “project” horses for donation.

Personal communication between the donor and the college is very important. We recommend that the trainer and owner both communicate with the college by phone and by email regarding the horse. Horses that are considered desirable and suitable donations are invited to the college for a three week trial. During the donation trial period, the horse is evaluated by our staff veterinarian, farrier, faculty and staff. The horse will be ridden in a variety of riding classes and team practices to assess the horse’s suitability for our programs.

Part 1: Beginning the Donation Process

Fill out the Donation Prospect Fact Sheet and either:

  • Email

    Email it to Kelsea Smail at  ksmail@lec.edu

    Videos of the horse in work are also requested at this time.

  • Fax


  • Mail

    Kelsea Smail c/o Lake Erie College 391 W Washington Street Painesville, OH 44077

The Donation Prospect Fact Sheet is reviewed by the equine studies faculty and staff. If we feel the horse may be appropriate for our program, the next stage of the process begins.

Part 2: The Donation Trial

Fill out and sign the Donation Trial Contract and send it to Kelsea Smail at  ksmail@lec.edu.

Send us:

  • Veterinary Records

    Complete veterinary records (minimum of 3 years)

  • Coggins Test

    Negative Coggins test within one year, and valid throughout the trial period.

  • Vaccinations

    Medical documentation of vaccinations and deworming:

    Influenza and Rhinopneumonitis within 6 months

    Tetanus, EEE, WEE and WNV and Rabies within one year

    Deworming with ivermectin within 60 days

When all of the medical documentation and the Donation Trial Contract are approved, Wendy Burtt will contact the donor to schedule an arrival date for the horse at the college.

  • Current supplements and medications must be sent with the horse for the trial period.

  • The horse must be well shod or trimmed. Lake Erie College will not shoe or trim horses on donation trial.

  • Please send any special equipment or blankets needed for the horse during the trial period.

When the horse arrives at Lake Erie for the trial period, the horse will be ridden and evaluated and used in our riding program to ensure compatibility. By the end of the three week donation trial period, the college will inform you if your horse has been approved for donation. If the horse is not approved for acceptance into the program, the owner will have seven (7) days to pick up the horse after notification of non-acceptance.

Part 3: Acceptance

To complete the acceptance, the donor should return the following to Lake Erie College:

Upon receipt of all paperwork, the donor will receive from Lake Erie College:

  • Thank you letter acknowledging that no goods or services were received in exchange for the donation of the horse.

  • Signed IRS Form 8283.

  • Signed Application for Gift to Lake Erie College.

Be sure to complete, sign and submit all requested paperwork before your horse arrives at the college and at the time of acceptance.

If you have any concerns about completing any of the paperwork or questions about donating your horse to the college, please contact Kelsea Smail at ksmail@lec.edu or 440-375-8020.

Lake Erie College is a 501(c)3 non-profit institution, and the donation of horses may be of considerable benefit to donors. We suggest that donors seek the advice of their tax professional regarding the donation of horses to the college.