equine quick response

Mutual Association for the Suppression of Horse Stealing: 1819

HorseStealing2An interesting archived constitution of by-laws for the Mutual Association for the Suppression of Horse Stealing circa 1819.

The articles read:

Article 1. This association, shall be known and distinguished by the name of the Mutual Association for the suppression of Horse Stealing.

Article 2. The Officers of this Association shall consist of a President, Secretary, Treasurer, Committee of Vigilance, to consist of six and a Board of Accounts to consist of three persons, who shall be elected annually by Ballot.

Article 3. The duty of the President shall be to preside over the Association, at their meetings and further to do all such acts, as by the Constitution and Bye Laws of this Association, he may be required to do and on all questions, arising at said meetings, he sall have a casting vote, and no other.

Article 4. It shall be the duty of the Secretary, to keep an exact and regular journal of the proceedings of the association with the Treasury.

Throughout history, horse stealing has been an issue those affected or threatened have taken very seriously. While the punishment for these crimes has lessened dramatically through the years, we as horse owners continue to take the threat with just as much offense as horse owners of the past. While we may be limited as to what we can do as far as the law is concerned, we CAN take a stand together and make it as difficult for theives to succeed as possible.

Donna Norton, EQR Co-Founder, states, “I see posts about stolen livestock on Facebook everyday. It is so important to protect our animals.” Our strongest defense today is modern technology; networking. We feel our database will continue to provide the most sophisticated networking functionality available in the US today, we have spared no expense in it’s development and maintenance.  Our commitment to its longevity and expansion is tremendous and ongoing.  We are proud of this powerful tool we have introduced to the equine industry and how far we have come over the past year.

We have a great interest in having as many members register their horses as possible within our national database for the purpose of strengthening the equine community nationwide, making it more difficult for thieves to succeed, and easier to bring our horses home.


Top 10 Ways to Keep Horses Safe and how EQR can help

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

We invest time and money to protect our homes and property, and often without realizing it, leave our horses vulnerable to theft from home, at shows or while traveling. Most of us personally know at least one person who has suffered the horrific violation of having a horse stolen. It’s time for the equine community to band together and take every step possibly to prevent horse theft. The measures provided can, at the very least, make it very uncomfortable for a thief to target and successfully profit from the theft of YOUR horse.

#10. Brand, microchip or tattoo.

While all three methods are beneficial, we at EQR highly recommend freeze branding. A branded horse is not a good target of theft, and will most often be passed over in preference of an unbranded target.

A brand greatly increases expedient, successful owner identification. A brand registered with your state can be used as proof of ownership. A brand registered with EQR provides a route for national identification and internet search-ability within our database, accessible by the public, law enforcement and animal welfare.

A horse with a brand is carrying his own source of identification which can not only help deter theft, but bring him home in the event of loss or natural disaster.

#9. Truck & Trailer Decals.

Chances are you personally know at least one person or family who have had their trailer stolen from a show, event, camping or even from home. Often, including their precious horses and valuable tack. The personal, emotional and financial loss can be phenomenal.

By adhering vinyl truck and trailer decals, your property becomes much less desirable a target. As EQR members, you may special order decals containing YOUR personal brand, farm name, and EQR emergency contact information, making it easier to identify your trailer from long distances. EQR works with our members and law enforcement in the event of theft to help in identification of property and provide media blasts not only to law enforcement, but to the public as well.

The best defense is to deter theft and make your property the least desirable target. As a second defense, EQR will make it very hard for whomever stole your property to hide!

Members: it is critical to keep your EQR membership profiles current and up to date with photos of your registered horses and trailers so that we BEST SERVE YOU should you need us.

#8. Mark Your Tack.

Marking the underside of your tack can help make identifying your property easier as well as deter prospective thieves. A number of methods may be used to mark your tack, including; permanent marker, leather engraving, identifying conchos and other silver type embellishments. Many of us at EQR prefer branding the undersides of our tack and recommend this method of marking tack.

When you order a branding iron from Pittsburg Foundry, you can also purchase a mini-iron perfect for such tasks. The mini-iron can also be used to brand steaks, wood decor and other items. By the way, all EQR members receive a discount coupon from Pittsburg Foundry saving members $40.00 off typical market price AND includes a FREE truck/trailer decal with your brand.  Now, your horses, truck/trailer and tack all carry your brand!

Visit our friends and sponsors at Pittsburg Foundry: http://www.freeze-brands.com/

#7. When You’re Away.

We often load up one or two horses and haul for a day of riding, leaving the rest of the herd at home. Not to mention long periods of time we may be away due to work or other reasons. These are times when neighbors or passersby may be the only eyes on our horses. What if our horses get out? Or are seen ‘down’ in their pasture, sick or injured? Often our neighbors have no idea what to do or how to handle an equine emergency, and no way to contact the horse owners.

Every EQR member receives a free outdoor emergency sign which can be mounted on a fence post, gate or barn. Additional signs may be purchased at any time. Each sign contains the EQR ‘hotline’ phone number, which is answered 24/7. Anytime an at-home emergency call is made in behalf of one of our member’s horses, EQR will personally contact that member with a report. Your privacy is ensured while a contact number is publicly posted for neighbors, passersby or even the police to be able to get word back to you regarding any emergency at home, through EQR. THAT’S security!

#6. Proof of Ownership.

Establish an organized, easy-to-find proof-of-ownership file. To save valuable time and frustration in proving ownership should a theft occur, keep on file:

a. Registration papers (if horse is registered with a breed association);
b. Dated bill of sale and/or breed association transfer-of-ownership paperwork;
c. Photographs; and
d. Description of mark or brand and written description of all unique characteristics.

All EQR members have the option of privately storing a digital copy of all such papers in their EQR membership profile, as well as current coggins test. All stored documents are for our member’s use only, and can be accessed by logging in to your membership profile from any location where internet is available, by computer, cell phone or other web enabled device. Documents may be printed from your file. Your documents are kept safe and will always be there should you need them for any reason, whether to assist in proving ownership or to temporarily replace lost or damaged originals.  This EQR service is free, and is included in all memberships.

#5.  House Away From the Road.

If you plan to build a barn or corral, locate it away from the road. Place facilities beyond your house if at all possible. They are less likely targets if they are more difficult to access and require thieves to pass a house. Lock gates to pastures that can be entered from the road.

Do not hang halters and lead ropes on stall fronts, corral gate posts or anywhere in the open. Secure halters in a locked tack room or feed room. Never leave halters on pastured horses.

EQR endeavors to provide theft prevention measures, deterring potential theft by publicly informing visitors that your farm and horses are protected by membership with EQR.  While EQR is not law enforcement, we believe that by working closely with law enforcement, sale barns, veterinarians, branding professionals, state brand registration entities, animal control agencies, borders/customs, and all forms of public media, that equine theft can be deterred and thwarted, and that horses may enjoy a life-line of security in an often cruel and unforgiving world.

#4. Photograph horses and keep photos current.

Photograph both sides of the horse as close as possible, being sure to get the entire horse in the frame. Although saddles, blankets, leg wraps and people may look good in a photo, they often impair the photo’s usefulness for identification. Take close-up pictures of any unique, identifying characteristics such as a brand, permanent scar or white markings.

At EQR, we recommend taking side views, both sides, with all 4 feet showing. Front and rear photos are certainly helpful as well. Within each EQR Member Profile, is an area where members are to upload photos of each of their horses, enter identifying marks, brands, microchip info, tattoos, etc. Members may also store digital scans of registration papers, current coggins, health papers, immunization and deworming records, so forth. This is a free service to all our members and a handy way to keep all your important documents and identification photos in one convenient location, accessible from any computer, smart phone or other web enabled device.

#3. Be able to identify quickly and without doubt.

“All my horses are branded and micro chipped. In case of theft or escape, I want to be able to identify mine quickly and without doubt.” Steve Jones, 33 years with LSU and the Arkansas Extension Services and State Equine Specialist.

Horses and equipment are stolen from barns, farms, pastures, boarding and training facilities, competitive events-even from backyards. Tracking stolen horses can be difficult because theft reports are often delayed and stolen horses can change hands frequently and at remote locations.

EQR members have a strong support system, first to assist in DETERRING theft, and second to QUICKLY assist in publicizing theft to the proper sources, media and public, and finally to assist in recovery and return in the unfortunate event of theft. Membership with EQR provides a lifeline to your equine companions and stock!

#2. Lifetime registration with EQR.

Upon joining EQR, members have the option to purchase a Lifetime Registration for each of their horses. Each Lifetime Horse remains in the EQR database as long as he/she lives. Registration is transferable from owner to owner for the life of that horse, and is given as a certificate. Should a horse end up in an undesirable situation years down the road, EQR will contact the person of interest who registered that horse, providing them the opportunity to rescue the horse and bring him back home, regardless of whether that person’s membership had been maintained over the years.

Brooke Ferguson, pictured here, has played a very active role in rehabbing and rehoming rescue horses through her family farm, Journey’s End Horses, where each rescue is given Equine Quick Response’s “Lifeline for a Lifetime”, to ensure they will always have a way back home. 

#1. All of the Above.

FREE Lifetime Registration – $50.00 Value

lifetime-sample72We are celebrating summer by offering our LIFETIME REGISTRATION **FREE** with any new membership for as many horses as you register ($50.00 value for each horse!). Our “Lifeline for a Lifetime” assures your horse a registry in our national database for the duration of its life. The certificate is transferable to new owners, should you sell or re-home your horse at any time. The original purchasing member’s contact information remains linked to that horse for life (members are responsible for keeping information current through the years.  New owners may be listed with a lifetime registered horse.  Complete owner history and contact information is archived and retained for each horse.). Your lifeline horse may be tracked back to you at any time through its life as a person of interest in this horse’s well-being.

For a limited time, new members receive their Lifetime Certificate in their membership packets for each horse registered (photos and details must be completed in each horse’s profile within our database to generate the certificate). Certificates are printed on beautiful parchment paper suitable for framing and will make a valuable addition to your horse’s documents.  Each horse registered for a lifetime will remain in the EQR national database regardless if the original member maintains their annual dues, and regardless of how many times the registered horse changes ownership.

This LIFETIME CERTIFICATE is so important to us as a value to horses, adding security to their livelihood and a lifeline to be returned to a caring home, that any current member wishing to receive a Lifetime Certificate for their presently registered horses may request to have certificates generated for their registered horses at a nominal fee to cover the cost of shipping and printing.  Don’t delay, the weather could change at any time and this offer will end!


  1. Visit our website and choose a membership level which best suits your needs: http://www.eqr-us.com/Membership
  2. Purchase your membership (one time registration fee to set up your profile in the database and annual dues)
  3. Complete your profile information, add your horse’s photos and details
  4. Once your horse’s profiles are complete, your certificates will be generated from the information you provide.  Your certificate(s), one per horse registered, will be printed and shipped to you with your new membership packet.

Question: What’s the difference between a regular membership and a lifetime membership?

Answer: Regular memberships must be maintained by annual dues.  If a member has purchased a lifetime membership for a particular horse (or received one free with this offer), their horse’s profile and owner history will remain in our database regardless if the owner maintains their membership.  While the member may miss out on many member benefits, including the ability to add new horses, the lifeline horse will continue to be able to be tracked back to the original owner for its lifetime.

Lifetime Registration can only apply to the particular horse it was assigned to, though it is transferable to new owners.  Archived owners who are no longer members will not have a personal EQR member profile with their registered horses listed under them.  Only the lifeline horse will have a database entry, with owner contact information archived.  Lifetime Registration is only available for purchase by current members and their registered horses as a premium level of service.

Annual memberships pertain only to owners, with their registered horses listed under them in the database.  Members may also register trailers, store pertinent documents within each of their registered horse’s profiles, upload current photos at any time, access documents from any web enabled device, and receive discounts from our growing list of discount merchants, as well as other benefits.  Each member’s profile may serve as a ‘bank’ of important, crucial information, stored neatly according to the horse the information pertains to, easily accessed in the event of emergency, theft or disaster.

Register your horses with our national database: www.equinequickresponse.com

Have you registered your horse with EQR?


When you register your horse(s) with EQR, the registration fee is a ONE TIME fee to enter your horses in our national database. The annual fee is a yearly membership, payable on the anniversary of your signup date each year.

What can you Register?

  • Register your brand
  • Horses with tattoo, BLM Brand or Microchip
  • Unbranded Horses
  • Show, Pleasure, Trail and Performance Horses
  • Mules, Ponies and Draft Horses
  • Unregistered and Grade Horses
  • Vehicles & Trailers

How can EQR Help?

  • Searchable national database
  • Protection after sale or re-homing
  • Theft protection
  • Natural disaster support
  • Link to law enforcement and agencies
  • Emergencies at home

What is the EQR Database for?

  • Each member has a personal profile where you can enter your horses, your brand, specific details about each of your horses as well as photos.  Your profile will be searchable by the public, though no one will be able to see your personal information, your brand and horse photos will be searchable within our database according to the keywords you used in each of your horse’s descriptions, as well as markings, brand, tattoo, microchip details.
  • Law Enforcement and other agencies of interest to equine emergencies, rescue and care have non-member access to our database.  They cannot see your personal information, such as name, address, phone, etc. However, they are able to search our database by horse location, description, brand, markings and other specific keywords.
  • Anyone can file a report with EQR about a missing, lost, found or stolen horse.  Someone finding a horse can take photo with a cell phone or digital camera of the horse, its brand or any identifying factors, and upload it to our site for assistance with determining an owner.  EQR will contact the owner personally, private information is NEVER shared with any non-official EQR administration staff.
  • In the event of a natural disaster, authorities, veterinarians, and other persons may submit photos or details of found horses for identification.  Branded horses will have a higher success rate for quick identification and safe return to their owners.
  • Typically, every state has a booklet of registered brands.  Law enforcement from each state are provided with such books.  They are not digitized traditionally.  Many officers do not actually have them on hand in the field.  Now, all officials have access to a searchable national database to assist efforts in locating owners and safely returning lost, stolen or displaced horses.  Our database is easily accessed by any computer, and even smart phones with service in the field!

These are but a few uses for the Equine Quick Response database.  Please follow our blog for ongoing articles providing information and education about our services and the many ways EQR is determined to assist the equine industry in keeping horses safe, and reducing concerns of horse owners.


Exclusive Member Savings


Molly’s Custom Silver continue to produce the finest quality buckles, conchos, and other silver products available in USA. We are very proud to be able to offer our members worthwhile savings on these outstanding products!


When you register with EQR, you will receive two opportunities for saving with Molly’s Custom Silver. Special pricing codes will be included in your membership packet you will receive in the mail after joining.

1. FIRST TIME PURCHASE SAVE 25% off ONE custom silver buckle AND the $50.00 design/set up fee waived.

2. EVERYDAY MEMBER SAVINGS OF 15% off other Molly’s Custom Silver products anytime as long as your EQR membership is maintained.


Once you have designed your own personal brand, Molly’s Custom Silver can provide you with a beautiful custom buckle displaying your brand and farm name. Can’t get enough of your brand? Purchase a buckle for each horse you own displaying your brand and have them mounted on your saddle pads.

More accessories to bling your brand for the world to see, and save 15% off all your purchases as an EQR member!

  • pendants
  • hat pins
  • keychains
  • bridle conchos
  • stirrups
  • money clip
  • snuff can lids
  • more!

Discounts do not include shipping.  Envision your beautiful design at: www.mollyscustomsilver.com

Does Freeze Branding Hurt?

Contents of this article shared by Australian Master Brander, Tony Carter

Contents of this article shared by Australian Master Brander, Tony Carter-Smith

The first question most of us ask when considering freeze branding our horses is if the procedure causes pain and if  the application is humane.  To get the best answer, we decided we’d like to hear what a long time professional in the field had to say on the subject.  Pittsburg Foundry, the official branding iron supplier of Equine Quick Response, LLC, happens to have a long time client from Australia who has spent the past 25 years of his life in this field; Tony Carter – Smith PTY Ltd.  Tony gave us the following insights on the freeze branding process:

“Freeze branding is a safe, virtually painless and economical process. The brand is legible, permanent and can be read from a distance, this means your horse is less likely to be the target of thieves. It’s like your horse or pony having its own registration plate. Other methods of branding can be painful and quite often result in an uneven and unreadable brand.”  Tony Carter-Smith

The brand shown here within 1/2 hour of being branded

The brand shown here within 1/2 hour of being branded

What is Freeze Branding?

Freeze branding is a method of visibly and permanently identifying horses and ponies. Freeze branding, as the name suggests, is carried out by freezing the brand using liquid nitrogen to -196c and then applying to the skin for 6-10 seconds. This destroys the hair pigment so when the hair grows back it is white. White or grey horses will need a slightly longer application; this will destroy the hair follicle which will result in a hairless brand.

The Process

A small area on the animal’s shoulders is clipped and methylated spirit is applied to the clipped area, the brand is then applied. The horse/pony may be walked in a small circle or stand quite still  while the brand is being applied. They react differently but most times barely notice what is going on. Even foals cope well with this process.

The final product, Wadelee Obsession* show here 3 months later with his beautiful Freeze brand.

The final product, Wadelee Obsession* shown here 3 months later with his beautiful freeze brand.

The brand swells up after it is applied, but this swelling subsides within a couple of hours. The branding application is virtually painless to the animal.

Does it hurt?

The coldness of the application will help to act as an anesthetic; however the initial effect can cause slight discomfort. Many horses can be branded with little or no restraint but of course we don’t usually know which they are until after the brand has been applied. All efforts are made to make this process as stress free as possible for animal, handler and brander. As this application does not break the skin and does not cause ongoing discomfort your horse can be ridden, rugged and fed as normal.

How long before the brand shows?

Freeze branding is humane and therefore a gradual process. At first there will be little to see, then the old hair will die away and the new hair will grow through in the shape of the brand. This will take approximately 4 – 6 weeks.

Tony Carter has 25 years experience freeze branding horses. He works under contract to freeze brand and take DNA samples of all standardbred foals in Victoria, Australia, as well as the majority of the thoroughbred studs.

Tony Carter-Smith has 25 years experience freeze branding horses. He works under contract to freeze brand and take DNA samples of all standardbred foals in Victoria, Australia, as well as the majority of the thoroughbred studs.

Here in Australia all thoroughbreds and standardbreds (harness horses) must be freeze branded with registered brands and micro chipped.  This is recorded on national and state databases. Many other breeds are also freeze branded and micro chipped and their brand is recorded by their own horse association or society. We have a national/state microchip register.

Many people freeze brand their pleasure horses with unregistered brands but it serves the purpose of giving identity. In the southern states of Australia, most working horses are freeze branded now but in our larger states there is still some hot branding, mainly due to tradition, lack of liquid nitrogen in remote areas and cost.

Tony brands all types from Clydesdale to miniature and everything in between. He brands all standardbreds in this state and 75% of the thoroughbreds so this time of the year is busy for him. Probably the biggest difference we notice is that the brands in the USA are enormous compared to ours. Most Thoroughbred brands here are only one 1″ inch, which grow a little after application, but this gives a clear clean brand. Our brands are actually manufactured in Texas, it took them a while to figure out how we could use such “itty bitty” brands.

Good luck with the database service you offer in America. Cheers.

Robyn and Tony
Tony Carter-Smith Pty Ltd

With many thanks to Tony Carter-Smith for sharing the information contained in this article.  To learn more about Tony please visit his website:  

*Wadelee Obsession is owned by Courtney Schleter & Jessica Herring of Wadelee Pony Stud, Mt. Gambier SA.

EQR Supports Targeted $1 Million Dollar Charity Event

PATHEquine Quick Response, LLC is very proud to lend support to the 2014 Charitable Shamrock PATH Ride Event as an industry partner. PATH International members help 56,000 children and adults with physical, mental and emotional challenges find strength and independence through the power of the horse, each year. Of additional interest to horse people is the fact that PATH International employs some 8,000 horses nationwide. The Shamrock PATH Ride Event, being conducted in behalf of the charity by the American Competitive Trail Horse Association, endeavors to achieve its goal of holding 1,000 charity trail rides for PATH International during the month of March this year, consequently raising a $1,000,000 for the charity.

The American Competitive Trail Horse Association (ACTHA) continues to enlist the charitable efforts of ride hosts, volunteers, riders and sponsors in support of this inspiring event. Trail rides are being scheduled throughout the USA, and urges that no effort is too small nor will go unappreciated.


Hosts across the country are stepping up to hold events in support of the Shamrock PATH Ride Event effort. Whether it’s one of ACTHA’s Arena Obstacle Challenges, held in any arena, ring or field, or ACTHA’s Competitive Trail Challenge, stretching over a 6 mile course, the association has the resources to help bring riders, volunteers and prizes to your event. ACTHA provides the liability insurance, and you are given personal assistance by one of their dedicated Ride Coordinators.

Hosts will need a location to hold an event, on public or private land, and a place to park 15-25 trailers. To learn more about the benefits of hosting an event, click (www.actha.us/hostaride) or email robin@actha.us.

PATH International website: www.pathintl.org
The American Competitive Trail Horse Association website: www.actha.us

Equine Quick Response Memberships

When becoming an Equine Quick Response (EQR) member, you will have several membership levels to choose from according to your needs.  The EQR membership database is set to launch February 2014.  We invite you to consider protecting your horses with an EQR membership and look forward to providing a valuable service to horse owners nationwide.

ANNUAL Owner Membership Levels
Registration fees are one time payments to register your horse(s) with EQR.  Annual memberships are to be paid once each year, renewable upon the anniversary of your initial registration date.

PARTNER / $19.95 registration fee
            $14.95 annual membership fee.  Limited membership for horses without a brand.

HOBBY / $59.95 registration fee
            $19.95 annual membership fee. 1 to 4 horses.

FARM / $79.95 registration fee
              $19.95 annual membership fee.  5 to 9 horses.

RANCH / $99.95 registration fee
              $19.95 annual membership fee.  10 to 24 horses.

REMUDA / Call for special pricing
             25+ horses

Photo 1: Closeup of your brand

Photo 1: Closeup of your brand

LIFETIME / $50.00 per horse
Current members are eligible to purchase a lifetime registration for their horses.  Lifetime registration enables protection after the sale even if your membership is not maintained.  When providing a horse with a Lifetime membership, previous owners, contacts or persons of interest who registered the horse are responsible for maintaining accurate and updated contact information within the EQR database.  Reminders will be provided annually.

Photo 2: Right side of your horses, all 4 legs showing

Photo 2: Right side of your horse, all 4 legs showing

In the event a horse is recovered by law enforcement, animal control, sale barns, etc., regardless of time passed,  any reports made to EQR regarding the at-risk status of  any registered horse, contact will be made initially to any current member owner registered, if any.  If that party is not interested or able to initiate rescue efforts in behalf of the EQR registered horse, or if there is no member owner registered, the party registered under the Lifetime membership will be notified immediately.

Photo 3: Left side of your horse, all 4 legs showing

Photo 3: Left side of your horse, all 4 legs showing

The LIFETIME Membership registration is significant to breeders or trainers who sell horses and include EQR Lifetime Membership Registration for their colts or sale horses, or any person needing to sell a horse they care about and wish to provide a permanent lifeline to.  Regardless of how many owners the horse may encounter during its lifetime, the breeder/trainer/previous owner will always be registered as a person of interest and contacted should any reports be filed on that horse.

When registering your horses with EQR, each horse will require three photos to be submitted for their profile.  These photos will be used to verify identity, or may be used in national alert blasts to assist in the recovery of lost or stolen horses.

When taking your photos, be sure lighting is good and your background not too busy so that your photos clearly depict your horse, its build and markings.  These are not sale photos, so do not be concerned with setting your horses up perfectly, the primary concern is a clear view of each side and all four legs so that socks, stockings, etc. can be easily seen.

A Cowboy Tradition meets Modern Technology

1883 Wyoming Cattle Brands Book

1883 Wyoming Cattle Brands Book

In times past, livestock owners relied upon branding as a method of identification and even proof of ownership.  Branding books were made to chronicle registered brands, their owners and ranches.  These books are still in use today, and even provided to law enforcement personnel to aide in identifying lost or stolen livestock. We are very excited at Equine Quick Response (EQR) to embark upon a project set to take these noble traditions into the world of modern technology, primarily for the benefit of horse owners.  This technology will allow law enforcement, veterinarians, sale barn attendees, and private parties to simply snap a cell phone or digital photo of a suspect or found horse, as well as a close-up of its brand, and submit to EQR right from their smart phone or computer for identification and ownership confirmation purposes. Membership will place brand, contact and property information into a retrievable national database.  Annual or life-time memberships will be available with EQR, with our database being set to launch this coming February 2014.


EQR’s national database will utilize modern technology with the tradition of branding.  In addition to being able to register your brand to identify your horse and provide crucial contact information for the safe return of your horse, EQR members will also be able to:

  • Post provided signs and window/vehicle decals serving as theft deterrent for each member; displaying EQR registry with national database and contact information
  • Order decals of personal, registered brand to apply to truck/trailers
  • Register trailers/trucks with EQR and utilize the same identification services offered for horses
  • Order custom branding irons

In the event that a horse is lost or stolen, EQR will initiate a media blast to veterinarians, border/customs, US processing plants and state law enforcement with contact info, side views of horse, close up/location of brand, and contact for specific visual identification.


Yellowstone Monitor., September 10, 1908

Yellowstone Monitor., September 10, 1908

Livestock branding is a technique for marking livestock so as to identify the owner. Originally, livestock branding only referred to a hot brand for large stock, though the term is now also used to refer to other alternative techniques such as freeze branding. Other forms of livestock identification include inner lip or ear tattoos, earmarking, ear tagging, and RFID tagging with a type of microchip. The semi-permanent paint markings used to identify sheep are called a paint or colour brand. In the American West, branding evolved into a complex marking system still in use today.

The act of marking livestock with fire-heated marks to identify ownership has origins in ancient times, with use dating back to the ancient Egyptians. Among the ancient Romans, the symbols used for brands were sometimes chosen as part of a magic spell aimed at protecting animals from harm.

The unique brand meant that cattle owned by multiple ranches could then graze freely together on the open range. Cowboys could then separate the cattle at “roundup” time for driving to market. Cattle rustlers using “running irons” were ingenious in changing brands. Brands became so numerous that it became necessary to record them in books that the ranchers could carry in their pockets. Laws were passed requiring the registration of brands, and the inspection of cattle driven through various territories. Penalties were imposed on those who failed to obtain a bill of sale with a list of brands on the animals purchased.

Free-range or open-range grazing is less common today than in the past. However, branding still has its uses. The main purpose is in proving ownership of lost or stolen animals. Many western US states have strict laws regarding brands, including brand registration, and require brand inspections. In many cases, a brand on an animal is considered prima facie proof of ownership.

Brand Books are used by law enforcement officials, brand inspectors, and association investigators to record and track livestock movement, deter loss of livestock by straying or theft, and prosecute thieves. Brand books are made available to law enforcement for free, while others may purchase from their County Exentsion Agents. Some states have their brand books available online.


Library of Congress: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn86075153/1908-09-10/ed-1/seq-8/