Abused horses rescued from Loudon County barn
www.wbir.com-Officers with Loudon County Animal
Control rescued nearly two dozen malnourished horses on Wednesday
They now are safe at "Horse Haven" in West Knox
County, but the shelter said this is happening all too often.
Officials believed the animals were in grave
danger while in the owner, Deborah Ervin's care. She faces charges
for cruelty to animals.
The horses were found with bones exposed, underfed
and living in their own filth. Officials believe some never saw
outside the barn.
According to a horse condition index, all of the
20 horses are classified in poor condition.
"We are very upset to see any animal come to us in
this condition but this is basically what we get on a regular
basis," said Horse Haven founder, Nina Margetson.
Horse Haven is currently rehabilitating 61 rescued
horses which is the most they've ever had.
"We're going to have to say no to the counties if
they call us because we don't have any more room to house anymore
animals," she said.
They operate as a non-profit and do not charge
county animal control for their services. "They can't afford it
either. But if we weren't here to help them these animals would
still be living in the same deplorable conditions they were taken
from," said Margetson.
With the addition of horses, they are worried
about their financial future. However they said this work is worth
it, knowing the animals now have a good home.
Horse Haven will hold the animals as evidence
until the court date.
If they are surrendered, they will be put up for