Sixteen Horses Removed From Ohio Farm

Vindy.com, the online edition of The Vindicator, has reported that 16 malnourished horses have been removed from a boarding farm in Canfield, Ohio. Hubbard veterinarian Suzanne Wilcox, DVM, told the paper the horses were living in "unsafe and squalid conditions."

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COURTESY DR. SUZANNE WILCOX

This weak, ataxic horse was one removed from a farm in Canfield, Ohio. Dr. Suzanne Wilcox said he had to be euthanatized.

The horses were living in stalls with 12-15 inches of manure and scum-filled water buckets, she said after assessing the animals last week. Property owner Thomas Skelton owns some of the horses and others are boarded animals.

The Mahoning County Sheriff's Department received complaints about the horses, and so a search warrant was obtained from Mahoning County Area Court. According to the article, sheriff's department personnel and organized volunteers moved the animals off the property. No arrests have been made, but charges could be filed this week. Vindy.com was unable to reach Skelton for comment.

Some of the boarded horses that were in "decent shape" appeared to have been cared for by their owners. The removed animals--some of which were Skelton's, others of which were boarders' animals--were in poor body condition. Most of the animals are around three or four years old.

Authorities took the horses to the Canfield Fairgrounds before sending them to various foster homes until their ultimate disposition is decided by a judge. The article reported that Animal Charity on South Avenue assisted with the case on Thursday (Oct. 26). (Read the full Vindy.com article here.)

Wilcox described one of the removed animals to The Horse (the horse is shown at right). "This horse was so weak and ataxic we had to help him in the trailer and he went down on us several times," she said. "He had some severe contraction issues with his legs and other issues with his stifles. The last time he went down it took them nearly two hours to get him up. He was only about four.

"He was humanely destroyed as a result," she added.

About the Author

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief, received a B.A. in Journalism and Equestrian Studies from Averett College in Danville, Virginia. A Pony Club and 4-H graduate, her background is in eventing, and she is schooling her recently retired Thoroughbred racehorse, Happy, toward a career in that discipline. She also enjoys traveling, photography, cycling, and cooking in her free time.

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