Mitchell Farm Equine Retirement, Inc.

Cause Area

  • Animals


300 East Haddam Road(Route 82)Salem, CT 06420 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

To provide a safe and comfortable retirement alternative for aged and infirm horses to live out their lives, and offer educational opportunities to the public on senior horse care and mangement.


Mitchell Farm Equine Retirement, Inc. provides a safe comfortable retirement alternative for aged and infirm horses.

Once admitted to the program, horses are cared for and owned by Mitchell Farm. They are handled, groomed, fed and allowed to graze and be stalled as conditions dictate. Medical and farrier concerns are paid for by MFER, Inc. The horses are sheltered and loved as long as they have an acceptable quality of life,

MFER, Inc. educates the public on subjects pertaining to senior horse care and alternatives to slaughter and livestock auctions. An informed equestrian community is sensitive to conditions at livestock auctions and transport to slaughter. They can also promote alternative situations for horses that are no longer useful. Understanding the unique needs of older horses enables horse owners to maintain them as useful for a longer period of time.

Horses are preferred to be at least 20 years old, but are accepted on an individual basis. They must be pasture sound and in reasonably good health. Each must have a veterinary certificate stating that it is free from communicable diseases, a negative coggins within six months and current rabies and tetanus vaccinations.

Horse owners must sign a contract relinquishing all rights of ownership to Mitchell Farm.


Would you recommend Mitchell Farm Equine Retirement, Inc.?
9 reviews Write a review
by Sonya B. (June 8, 2018)
Top notch care for horses! There are so many opportunities to contribute here from morning chores to collecting tickets to events and everything in between! Great group of people and organization - come on down!
by Janice S. (March 3, 2018)
I don't have to tell anyone who's looking to volunteer at Mitchell Farm to come for the horses because if you're looking to work with horses, the rewards are awesome anywhere. But do come because the staff is great! They're so dedicated and always right there with us. And come for the camaraderie of the volunteers - we all pull together to get the job done. Come for the beauty of the place, too. And yes, come for the horses, because in the end, that's who we're there for!
by Lori Ellen W. (March 1, 2018)
Volunteering at Mitchell Farm is a wonderful experience for anyone who loves horses. It doesn't matter if you have prior horse experience or not, this is a place where you can learn and take part in providing exceptional care to these loved animals. As a volunteer, I find my time spent at Mitchell Farm to be relaxing and rewarding. What a great place to be!
by Mary Ann P. (March 1, 2018)
I have been volunteering at Mitchell Farm since its very beginning in 2004. It started as a way to be around my own horses which were boarded there and to help Dee, the fantastic founder. As our horses aged we knew there was no where else we wanted them to be. Dee and her dedicated army of volunteers have become my closest friends. Not only because we have an amazing time working hard but also because they care so deeply for all of the horses who have passed through the farm over these past 14 years. I can't think of a better place to learn about caring for horses, what fun hard work actually is and the benefits of helping others. If you like to work outdoors, hang with friendly and caring folks and horses then Mitchell Farm is THE PLACE for you
by Brooke D. (February 18, 2018)
I have been a volunteer here since the summer of 2016. The people and horses are lovely. The vision of a dignified life for all equines is what brought me to the farm several years ago. This is a perfect place to volunteer for anyone. I've worked side by side with a variety of people, and have learned so much about the horses here. If you love horses, this is the place for you.
by Cheryl M. (February 18, 2018)
I have been volunteering with Mitchell Farm since its second year. That’s 13 years and counting. It is one of the most gratifying, grounding, good for your soul places. The senior herd is fun to be around and can teach us all a thing or two if we’re open to it. Then there are Dee, Melissa and Hank. Dee founded the place; it’s her life’s passion and purpose. She and Melissa have decades of horse experience and are patient teachers. I started when I was in my late 30’s and had very little horse experience. No matter. Hank does most of the non-horse building and spreading and creating, and has a quiet humor that’s bound to leave you chuckling quietly days later There are two daily shifts - morning and afternoon/evening. There are also episodic opportunities. Hay deliveries, farm clean-up days, and events. If you’re looking for a down to earth feel, a ton of heart, beautiful scenery and don’t mind getting a bit dirty, click the button to apply. We’d be happy to welcome you to the family
by Janet M. (January 8, 2018)
I have been a volunteer at Mitchell Farm for the past 2 years and it is a wonderful place to volunteer for so many reasons. The staff and other volunteers are amazing people and always a pleasure to be around, sharing our love of horses and doing all we can to make their retirement years as happy and healthy as possible. It is a tranquil and peaceful setting amidst pastures, lakes and of course, beautiful horses. What better way to step out of your busy lifestyle and nurture your soul by volunteering at Mitchell Farm? I call it a meditation in motion and a gift you can give yourself. Come join us.... it will be the best thing you ever did for yourself and the horses!
by Candace O. (July 22, 2017)
This is a perfect opportunity to work with lovely animals in an absolutely beautiful farm setting. You don't need prior experience as Dee (the owner) and Melissa(the barn manager) teach you everything you need to know. The volunteers are a great group of kind and compassionate individuals who truly care about the horses and donkeys. It's great exercise (and free- no gym fees!) and a wonderful opportunity to interact with horses (and yes, they all have their own personalities). Everyone is made to feel welcome and your help is very much appreciated. My daughter and I love working here.
by Robin KW W. (June 17, 2008)
Dee is a genuinely warm and kind lady who patiently answers all our many barn and horse questions. The horses are obviously well cared for and happy to share their love with volunteers. While they may not be able to cuddle in your lap, a horse "hug" is an incredibly peaceful and calming experience. I love volunteering there.

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