Emaciated Horses Rescued From Woodward Ranch
JONES, Oklahoma - A group of horses is on the mend after they were found starving and near death last week in Woodward. Blaze's Tribute Equine Rescue is now working to rehabilitate them.
The Woodward County Sheriff’s Office responded to an elderly man’s home last week after a neighbor reported his ten horses were being severely malnourished. One of them had already died.
When the team from Blaze's arrived to help, they discovered these horses had been suffering for weeks.
President Natalee Cross says of the owner, “He’s an elderly gentleman who was in very poor health himself and wasn’t able to take care of himself, let alone all these horses.”
Cross says one horse had died about a month ago or more, while another mare continued to share a pen with her body. A necropsy revealed how the animals had been filling their bellies.
“Her large colon was full of sand,” says Cross, “so they were eating what was available in front of them, which was sand.”
Another horse died shortly after the rescue, and yet another, now named after Bob Marley for his dread-locked tail, almost died too.
“He took a couple steps and collapsed and started seizing,” Cross remembers. “It’s probably one of the scariest things I’ve had to witness.”
OSU veterinarians helped get Bob back on his feet, and Cross's goal now is to get the horses back on a regulated nutritional plan.
She says, “They had about a two week window from our understanding that they was provided water, then not provided water, so they went through several periods of being dehydrated and then rehydrated.”
The sheriff's office has handed over the case to the district attorney's office to consider charges.
Blaze’s has seen an increase in abused and neglected horses recently, and the organization currently has at least 50 animals ready to adopt.
Cross says they could use donations of hay and money for medical bills, as well as pet parents looking to adopt happy horses like Bob. “The remaining seven with him have a long road ahead of them, but they all seem to be doing really well.”
If you would like to help with the horses’ recovery, click here.