On February 1, two severely emaciated horses—including the filly pictured here—arrived at DEFHR and began receiving round-the-clock emergency care and monitoring, and sling support if necessary. These 2 horses are part of an ongoing animal abuse investigation that includes 16 horses, various other animals such as sheep, dogs, pigs and cattle seized by the Pennsylvania State Police from an undisclosed property. Animal carcasses and bones were scattered across the property.
DEFHR was first contacted about this case on January 21 when they were asked to assist with the investigation and impoundment of 16 horses suffering from severe neglect. Over the past two weeks DEFHR has worked closely with the PA state authorities, rescue groups and veterinarians to provide care and support of 9 critically ill horses.
On January 28, DEFHR took in a critically ill horse from the same case so weak he was unable to stand during transport (see picture above). DEFHR staff, veterinarian and volunteers worked through the evening to get him into a sling and standing, but unfortunately he never regained the ability to bear weight on all four legs and displayed signs of neurological deficit. He had to be humanely euthanized.
The filly coming in today is receiving emergency care support during transport since she is also unable to stand without assistance. The filly is severely emaciated, with a Body Condition Score of 1 (a score of 4-5 is ideal; a score of 9 is obese). The vet will be on hand at DEFHR to do an evaluation and provide immediate care upon the horses’ arrival.
On January 22, the day before a massive snow storm was to hit the area where the animals were, 5 of the most severely ill horses were seized from the property and taken to Quakertown Vet Clinic for immediate attention.
On January 26, after the storm subsided, rescuers from peer rescue, Last Chance Ranch returned to the site to transport an additional 7 additional horses. Of the 7 horses, 3 are severely emaciated, needing round-the-clock care; 2 are pregnant and 2 have Body Condition Scores between 1 and 2.
Additional details of the situation are not being disclosed because it is an ongoing criminal investigation.