SUMNER COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Weeks after a dozen horses were rescued and another found dead on a farm in Grundy County, four are now with foster families, while the rest are getting healthier every day.
“Each rescue is different. You can have abuse, you can starvation but each one has its one story,” said Rachel McAuley.
On St. Patrick’s day, the horses and a pig named were all found starving to death.
Wednesday, at the Volunteer Equine Advocates in Sumner County, two of the horses are on the verge of giving birth and four others are waiting for a perfect forever farm.
“The light at the end of the tunnel is when we get them back here and they start gaining weight and we start socializing them to trust humans again.”
For a non-profit, taking on 12 horses at one time is no easy task, especially four pregnant mares.
“They are already skinny and then they have their babies, then they are going to have their babies and so all of that takes nutrients from them,” said equine trainer Alisha Rupp.
Unfortunately, two of the horses did not make it and a colt was never found.
“We lost two to malnutrition; they were just too far gone.”
McAuley told News 2 there is a silver lining.
“The phone has not stopped ringing,” she said.
Since the rescue, the group’s vet bills have been paid, hay has been dropped off and land is being donated for the recovering horses.
“It has a barn, stalls and tact room for emergency situation and different pastures,” said McAuley.
McAuley said through the dark times for these horses, they will one day saddle up again.
The owner was arrested and charged with animal cruelty.
Grundy County Sheriff Clint Shirm said he has bonded out and is expected to be in court next week.
Shirm said since more horses have died, more charges could be pending.