Horses are being rescued in Shawnee County, and rescue groups say there are still many more that are being neglected and even abused. It is a follow-up to a story we brought you in January.
Nicolette Schleisman looked into how Shawnee County Animal Control Officers handle cruelty and neglect complaints.
Horse rescue groups are constantly on the look out for horses around Shawnee County that are not being treated in what they consider humane ways.
“They’re all over the place, and unfortunately we can’t watch them all, we can’t keep track of them all, but we try,” said Brenda Grimmett.
Horse rescue groups say they are concerned about this plot off Highway 40 and Stubbs road in Shawnee County, where they say there are at least three horses here that do show signs of neglect and abuse.
“There’s frozen water here, there’s no feed, no hay, no grass, nothing to actually eat on but their own poop,” said Grimmett.
Brenda Grimmett runs B&C Equine Rescue, Inc. She says in the past six months they have rescued five horses. Their stables are completely full.
She has helped the Sheriff rescue horses before, and she wants to pick up these horses on Highway 40, but she can not get permission from the Sheriff’s Office, because they are not in bad enough shape.
“It’s just really difficult when they have to be severely emaciated and almost dead before the Sheriff, the DA, the Animal Control will do their job. And we don’t want them to get in that condition, if they aren’t being taken care of, let’s get some help,” said Grimmett.
Animal Control Officers say they want what is best for all animals.
“I’m an animal lover, that’s for sure,” said Kyle Runyon, an Animal Control Officer with the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office.
Nicolette Schleisman rode along with Animal Control Officer, Kyle Runyon, to see what an officer does when they get a complaint.
There are steps the officers are required to take before they could even consider taking an animal away. They have to give the owners the benefit of the doubt and try to educate them first.
“We’ll find most people, if you ask them nicely to do something to help that animal out, they will do it,” said Grimmett.
Runyon points out, every animal heals from neglect of abuse at different paces.
“Say if it’s a neglect or animal cruelty case, say if it’s a dog, a dog is going to get a lot better gain weight a lot quicker than a livestock animal. a dog maybe take a couple weeks, a livestock may take a month to a couple months,” said Runyon.
The three Animal Control Officers regularly make follow-up visits.
But rescue groups and Grimmett say they often visit any horses showing signs of abuse or neglect and throw hay or feed into their pasture, just so they will not have to see them suffer.
“Just don’t give up, these horses, animals, need our help,” said Grimmett.
The groups say they will not just stand-by when they see an animal in pain or suffering.
The Shawnee County Animal Control cannot talk about specific cases.
They were only able to answer general questions about cases of neglect. Also, they were not able to tell us how many horse neglect animal cruelty cases they get a year on average.