EDITOR'S NOTE: Anyone wanting to donate time or money to the care of the animals is asked to call Dinwiddie County Animal Control at (804) 469-4547.
DINWIDDIE COUNTY, Va. (WTVR) - Animal control officers seized more than 50 horses and donkeys from a Dinwiddie County property late Wednesday night. The animals were malnourished, according to a press release from Dinwiddie County Chief of Fire & EMS Dennis Hale.
CBS 6 Senior Reporter Wayne Covil was at the property Wednesday evening when animal control officers and veterinarian were going through the herd checking the animals for injuries and diseases.
The animals were “seized in place.” That means they will remain on their owners' property, under the 24-hour supervision of Dinwiddie animal control officers and sheriff's deputies.
The animals must be cleared by a veterinarian before they could be moved to a private facility. There is no facility in Dinwiddie big enough to handle the large group, according to the press release.
Monday, Dinwiddie County called in veterinarian Dr. Debbie Kinney-Nay to inspect the herd and give them their first report "Oh I got out of my truck and burst into tears, it was appalling" she says.
"There's something about seeing 21 starving horses that pushed me over the edge" says Dr. Kinney-Nay from her home.
Animal Control Chief Warden Debbie Broughton says "We know there's been a lot of horses on the location for a lot of years. They've owned horses but the shape of the horses now, has only recently become apparent.">
The animals have been put on a feeding plan to improve their health. Once a veterinarian clears the animals, Dinwiddie County Animal Control will ask the local equine community for help housing the animals as the case makes its way through the Courts.
The herd includes:
- 53 adult horses
- 1 one-week-old foal
- 3 miniature horses
- 4 donkeys
Several of the animals are pregnant, investigators said.
CBS 6 contacted the property owner, who at this time has not been charged.
The woman who answered the phone had no comment and asked we not call back.
The seizure case goes to court, Monday morning.
Anyone wanting to donate time or money to the care of the animals is asked to call Dinwiddie County Animal Control at (804) 469-4547.