Seized Horses Find Temporary Home in Chunky

A group of horses that officials say were neglected by their owner are now being cared for at Coyote Hills Stables in Chunky.

Officials say they are doing much better than they were a couple of weeks ago.

"It was bad. Everyone of them had diarrhea," said Kim Blanton, owner of Coyote Hills Stable.

She says diarrhea and dehydration were the two biggest problems the horses faced when they arrived at her place.

"Since they've been here the last two weeks, everyone is putting on weight. The diarrhea has stopped," Blanton said.

Blanton says this is key because all the animals were between 100 and 500 pounds underweight.

"He's probably about 400 or 500 pounds underweight," said Blanton, patting one of the horses. "If you notice, you see his backbone and hips. All of this right here should be filled in."

Unlike the small 10x10 pens county officials say these horses were staying in, now they have more than 30 acres on which to graze. Although this is good, it's also costly.

"We figured for the first six that came here, for one month it was going to be right at $1500 just to take care of them and feed them, board them, give them hay," said Blanton.

This does not include veterinarian fees, which are projected to be at least $300 for each of the seven horses.

It's the rising cost for care and the current state of the economy which Blanton says is causing many horses to suffer.

"You know, people lose their jobs. But if you know you can't afford them, sell them, give them away. Just don't let your horses starve to death," she said.

With continued proper care, Blanton says she is optimistic that all the horses will fully recover.

For now they will remain at the refuge at least until next week when a judge decides whether or not to return them to the owner.

A fund to help with the care of the horses, including food and veterinarian care, has been set up at any Citizens National Bank in Meridian.

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