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Horse abuse investigation in Custer County

Posted at 5:43 PM, Jun 14, 2019

CUSTER Co. — The Custer County Sheriff’s office says 36 horses have been seized from properties in the county after they were found to be in an emaciated state.

The Sheriff’s Office says they were first contacted about the animals on June 12th after receiving reports that up to 48 horses kept on 3 separate properties were being neglected.

The owner of the horses, a 71-year-old woman told investigators that she was aware her animals were thin, but that she was not able to pay for a veterinarian to care for them.

On June 13th, Sheriff’s deputies, Humane Society investigators and members of the Harmony Equine Center executed a search warrant seizing 36 of the horses for transportation to a rehab facility.

One of the seized horses had to be euthanized immediately due to its condition. More than half of the horses were also discovered to be pregnant. All of the animals were also quarantined due to a condition known as the strangles, which is a respiratory infection that’s contagious and potentially lethal.

To date, no charges have been filed, the Sheriff’s Office says they are waiting for a full investigation to proceed.