You know that every Thursday we have a Pet-of-the-Week up for adoption. But did you know that there are larger animals hoping to find forever homes too?

March 1st is National Horse Protection Day. It was founded in 2005 to bring attention to the needs of thousands of abused, unwanted, and neglected horses across the country. These are beautiful and majestic animals that need your help. If you have time or talent to spare and would like to get involved…or if you have the means to adopt…you might want to check out these rescue organizations, some of which are in Ocean and Monmouth Counties:

If you just love horses and are looking for something fun to do now that the weekends are getting warmer, why not go horseback riding on the beach… in New Jersey?

That's right, you don't have to take a fancy vacation in the islands to enjoy an unforgettable adventure. Just head over to Island Beach State Park in Ocean County. It's the only State Park in New Jersey where you can ride horses on the beach.

If you go, here are a few things to keep in mind:

The park DOES NOT have horses available to ride, so you have to bring your own or contact a horse stable to arrange a guided trip.

You must register and make your reservation five days in advance to be able to ride in the park.

Horseback Riding on the beach is only allowed during the off-season, from October to April, so you’ll want to schedule this soon!

Riding is limited to the southernmost six miles of the beach.

Check with the park for entry fees, local regulations, as well as designated parking areas for horse trailers.  The number is (732) 793-0506.

Happy Trails!  And tell us in the Comments section, do you like to go horseback riding? Have you ever gone for a ride along the beach in Ocean County?  Elsewhere?