Each year, an estimated 140,000 horses are sent to slaughter houses in Mexico and Canada from the United States.
Horse slaughterhouses existed in the U.S. until they were banned in 2007.
Recently, a lawmaker from Louisiana proposed amending the law to make it more difficult for people to send their horses over the borders to be slaughtered.
Some advocates have argued that slaughterhouses in Mexico aren't humane.
Still, some people see it as a business. In Mexico, the going rate for a horse is 12 cents per pound.
The 60 horses in Gunnison County were supposed to be sent to Mexico from Crested Butte on Sunday.
"They were in terrible shape," explained Liz Lecoq-Currier.
Lecoq-Currier spearheaded the effort to rescue the horses. She noticed them in an arena one day and decided to ask the property owner what their story was.
"He said the horses were going to Mexico to be slaughtered," Lecoq-Currier said.
Lecoq-Currier wasn't thrilled with his answer. So she asked him how she could save them. The man told her she could by them for $400 each, much more than they were worth.
Knowing it was an expensive venture, Lecoq-Currier decided to e-mail horse lovers across the globe to see if they would be willing to help out.
"In 48 hours we were able to raise enough money to save every single horse," she said.
At least 20 of the horses have been adopted so far.
"They're beautiful animals," said Annette Butler. "They will be spoiled".
Butler adopted four of the horses. She transferred them from Crested Butte to her farm in Elizabeth.
"I think they have a lot of life left," she said.
The horses that haven't been adopted yet have been transferred to a ranch in Crested Butte. Katherine Lacy and her husband donated the land until the horses find permanent homes.
"We need for every single one of these horses to find perfect homes," said Lecoq-Currier.
Lecoq-Currier believes there should be facilities in the United States that allow humane euthanization of horses. She doesn't believe the horses should be turned in to meat.
If you're interested in adopting a horse or sponsoring one, you can visit www.horsefoodbank.org , click on the 'donate' tab and then select 'Crested Butte Horse Relief' or you can e-mail email@example.com.
(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)