One Year Later, Horses Seized in Indiana Faring Well

Nearly a year after Indiana Horse Rescue (IHR) Southwest took over the care of more than 100 horses on a Gibson County, Ind., farm, the animals continue to improve, and many have been adopted into new homes.

Between seized animals and a large number of horses that were voluntarily surrendered, a total of 121 animals from the farm were placed in the care of IHR between 2006 and May 2007. (For more information on this case, see Horses Impounded in Ongoing Indiana Neglect Case.)  

"We had a lot of problems with a lot of the horses at first because of high parasite loads," said Kelsey Cook, secretary of the Animal Protection Coalition, which operates IHR and several other animal rescue organizations. "We had a lot of mares foal that you wouldn't even have thought could hold a foal, they were so skinny--but they had babies."

before rehab image
after rehab image

Faraa, a Quarter Horse mare, when impounded on May 26, 2007 (top image), and on Jan. 27, 2008. She is still available for adoption.

Indiana Horse Rescue bought the property from Richard Stallings, 67, the horses' former owner. The purchase enabled the organization's volunteers to care for the horses without having to transport them anywhere.

About 45 horses are now housed there, including 40 from Stallings' original herd.

As part of a plea agreement, Stallings pleaded guilty on Jan. 24, 2008, to eight felony torture charges and 42 misdemeanor neglect charges.

"He ended up receiving four months house detention and a year of probation, during which time he cannot own any animals or be around any animals," Cook explained.

Gibson County Sheriff R. Allen Harmon weighed in, saying, "We were a little disappointed that (Stallings) didn't get more of a penalty, but the horses are okay now, and that's what matters."

For more information on IHR Southwest and the horses still available for adoption, visit

About the Author

Karen Donley-Hayes

Karen Donley-Hayes started writing young, and had her first article published in a national horse magazine Horsewoman when she was a sophomore in high school. Since then, she has continued to combine her love of horses and writing. Karen has had an eclectic professional life, spending time on horse farms, became a paramedic for several years, and worked as a legal writer, a technical communicator, and medical writer and editor. She completed her Master’s Degree in interdisciplinary studies with a focus in bioethics, and is college editor for Hiram College, where she also teaches classes in medical and science writing. In her free time, she is a freelance writer, aspiring novelist, and remains active in the equestrian world. Hayes lives in northeast Ohio with her husband, a menagerie of cats, and one horse. More about Karen can be found on her website,

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