Oklahoma City Wildfires Uncover Possible Animal Neglect Cases

Friday, September 9th 2011, 6:17 pm
By: News 9

Adrianna Iwasinski, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Last week's fires in northeast Oklahoma City uncovered a possible severe case of animal neglect.

Four horses were found at 4701 N. Westminster Rd.  Their ribs and spines were showing and there was no food, water, or shelter to be found.

Those horses were taken to the animal shelter for care.

Now the owner of those four horses has been arrested and is facing 16 counts of animal cruelty.

Forty-four-year-old Raynard Ordell Smith spent ten hours in jail but is out on his own recognizance.

"We were working the fire and moving horses around their properties and getting them out of the affected areas and we came across these when we were doing that," said Rodney Pesch, an Oklahoma City Animal shelter supervisor.

"So we were concerned about them and we did the next step and we tried to make contact with the owner by leaving a notice and when we were not contacted back we went and got a judicial order to get them removed off the premises and get them into protective custody."

Pesch says he understands some people have fallen on hard times and may not be able to afford to care for their horses, but he added that's no excuse for this kind of neglect.

The Oklahoma City Animal Shelter does board many horses brought in on cases like these.

There are also several rescue groups like Blaze's Equine Rescue that can help.  They can be found at equinenow.com