June 25 th


Journey’s End Ranch Newsletter June 25, 2020

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It is with some sadness but mostly with profound gratitude that I write this. My declining health and limited outside help forced me to make the tough decision to reduce our population. My Dad died in November, leaving provisions for me to place animals in new, permanent homes with enough funding to support them for years. Funding is essential, but finding the perfect, permanent homes is a huge part of the equation and the most important. After careful consideration, we asked Equine WellBeing Rescue, Inc. to take Poco & Chico and asked Healing Hearts Animal Rescue and Refuge to take the 6 older horses who have some health and soundness issues. Both organizations are in Az.

Chico & Poco were picked up by Christine & Lary who run Equine WellBeing last Saturday. The burros made the 6 hour trip to Snowflake & are thriving with all the care & attention they are getting. Poco has a video posted of their arrival. He got out, took a look around and let out with a very loud song. Christine is now running Poco’s Facebook page for him. We are so very, very grateful!

Poco has a scratching tree!
Poco & Chico

Red, Dakota, Diego & Penny went to Healing Hearts Sunday. Lucky & Bayron will join them in a few weeks. They are getting lots of love & pampering. Again, we are so very grateful.

Diego & Penny in their fancy fly masks!
Penny getting braids. Dakota & Red in background

So, that will leave us with the 6 mustangs and two jennies, Rambeau the sheep & Buddy the dog.

Our 6 mustangs, ages 16-23
Serena who arrived pregnant in 2004 (wild BLM capture) and her daughter, Jovita

Cuckoo Bird showed up for lunch today…life goes on.

Thank you for your support. Please be sure to “like” Equine WellBeing Rescue, Inc.


and Healing Hearts on Facebook.



Cathy & The Gang

Categories : News


  1. jackie carroll says:

    I, like you, are full of sadness and joy. You couldn’t keep up the strenuous regime with all the guys with you health and Pocos’ foot was an arduous assignment for even the healthy. I am so glad that you found super places for him and Chico, and I know that they and the mustangs will be treated with love, dignity and respect and you will know that they are being taken care of at both sanctuaries, and I thank both the sanctuaries for taking them. I am with you 100% and am always here for you. Love you

  2. Cathy, I have followed your stories for a long time now and am so sorry to hear of the downsizing but fully understand. I feel it must be very hard for you, Please know I am thinking of You, Your Health and all the Animals You have Rescued. Hopefully you health will improve so you can visit them now and then. Take Care and be Strong, Know You are Loved by Many ~~ Even those of us who never had the chance to met you in person.
    Most Sincerely, Tammie

  3. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    Thank you so much. It has always been about them, not me, and I must accept the reality of my life. I have not been able to travel in 26 years, have defied death for many years & plan to keep fighting. Knowing that my Dad has allowed me to provide for them & move them to excellent homes is more than I can ask for. C’est la vie. 😉

  4. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    Thank you Jackie, for years of friendship and for supporting the sanctuary. I’m still grieving Knickers,Mariah and Warrior. Sending horses and burros to great new homes is much easier than burying ones we have lost. Love you!

  5. Joy Ramos says:

    Oh Cathy…I cannot begin to imagine how hard this has been for you. I am glad you are finding good homes for your animals. Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers

  6. Catherine h Ritlaw says:

    Thank you, Joy. I am fine with placing any of them in good homes.It is much better than holding onto animals I can not longer care for properly. I have been falling apart for years but it really escalated in the past year. Late stage Lyme, late stage Valley Fever & 5 autoimmune diseases will take me out eventually.I feel very fortunate to be able to send some, and eventually all, to safe, permanent homes. I hope your eye surgery went well!

  7. Judy T Torgerson says:

    My Dear Cathy, I know you must be sad for what you had to do with some of your beloved animals. BUT you picked two of the best places for them – Equine Rescue with Christine, and Healing Hearts for your horses. I am so happy that Christine is keeping up Poco’s page. I always loved to see his antics AND hearing his songs and also how little Chico is getting along. Cathy, if you need anything for yourself – please call me – you have my number. Love you lots!

  8. Catherine h Ritlaw says:

    Hi, Judy! Thank you! I am OK, just have a body that is not very usable at this point. When the other horses & burros must leave, we already have arrangements with a great 5000 acre wild horse & burro sanctuary. Hoping to keep them for some time

  9. Jeanna says:

    God’s blessings to you and all your animals. I never got to visit living in texas but i have followed you for a long time. May God’s healing be upon you and the care of your animals.

  10. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    Thank you. All will be well for them & I will accept whatever plans are in place for me.

  11. Judith Castiano says:

    Bless you for what you have been doing for those precious souls! I’m sure it must have been heartbreaking to have to make the decision you made. It is obvious how much you love them all. I am so sorry to hear about your serious health problems. I hope they will calm down so you can enjoy the dear ones that are still in your care. I’m also so pleased to know you have found them homes where they will be loved and cared for just as you did. Thank you for ALL the love, kindness and care you have given and are still giving. Our Creator will watch over you and your dear charges.

  12. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    Thank you so much! Your words are very much appreciated.

  13. Pat Murphy says:

    Thank you for taking such good care of your animals. You have done a great job. I have enjoyed your newsletter each month. Take good care of yourself. Pat Murphy

  14. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    TY Pat! We will still have 6 horses & 2 burros for as long as possible.

  15. Katrin Winterer says:

    I am both sad and yet, relieved for you. Over the years of receiving JERES news, I’ve come to realize how much this important work has cost you in terms of your own health and energy. Bravo for for making such a difficult choice on behalf of your health…I stand in awe of all that you’ve accomplished for the many creatures you helped. Enjoy your diminished responsibilities and stay strong.
    With love and great respect,

  16. Cathy Ritlaw says:

    Thank you Katrin, for your friendship & support! My main issue is that I can barely walk, so doing a lot of work just isn’t possible anymore. Valley Fever in my knee, has not responded to treatment. So, it is only fair to them to send the special needs animals to places where they will be cared for well. The 6 remaining horses & burros are less demanding. Love you!

  17. Susan Monty says:

    Dearest Cathy
    You are a true hero. All the animals under your care, past and present, are so lucky and so loved. I am very grateful that I have “met” you even though its only online. You make a difference in this world.
    Love to you,

  18. Thank you, Susan. Thanks also for your support & beautiful art work. love you!!

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