Rehabbing Neglected Horses: No Small Task

Restoring a neglected horse’s health can be rewarding, but also complicated, time-consuming, and sometimes unsuccessful.

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A group of horses allegedly locked in a barn for more than a year are now receiving rehabilitative care. But it won’t be an easy road for these horses or their caretakers. Restoring a neglected horse’s health is rewarding, but also complicated and time consuming.

James H. Pushee, police chief in Deering, New Hampshire, recalled in a written statement that, in May, law enforcement personnel responded to a complaint about several horses that hadn’t been seen outside of their barn for a year and a half. When the horses’ owners failed to voluntarily cooperate, Deering police and other authorities launched an animal welfare investigation. Acting on a warrant, investigators entered a barn on the property and found four Arabians, allegedly in extremely poor health and living in unsafe conditions, the statement said. Officials seized and relocated the horses to Live and Let Live Farm, in Chichester, New Hampshire, and the owners subsequently surrendered the animals, the statement said.

Anthony Costine and Spring Romer were later arrested and each charged with four counts of misdemeanor animal cruelty. They were released on their own recognizance and were unavailable for comment.

Rescuer Teresa Paradis said two of the horses had body condition scores of between 1 and 1.5 on a 9-point scale; the other two scored a 2 on that scale. One had a long-neglected hernia and all had skin irritations, along with thrush and other hoof problems, she said. Although they’ve been rescued, the horses aren’t out of the woods yet

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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