‘Worst case of neglect I’ve ever seen’: Non-profit caring for two horses rescued in Massachusetts

‘Worst case of neglect I’ve ever seen’: Non-profit caring for two horses rescued in Massachusetts
The conditions of the horses' hooves shocked rescuers. (MSPCA-Angell/MSPCA-Angell)

LUDLOW, Mass. — The Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals at Nevins Farm in Methuen is caring for two horses that were rescued from a home in Ludlow, Massachusetts, on Feb 5. The horses had to be dug out of their stalls because the manure was piled too high for them to exit through the doors.

Rescuers had to dig the horses out of their stall because of the piles of manure.
Rescuers had to dig the horses out of their stall because of the piles of manure. (MSPCA-Angell/MSPCA-Angell)

After two hours of digging, they were freed by MSPCA Law Enforcement and Adoption Center workers. As a result of being trapped in the stalls, the horses developed sores on their backs.

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MSPCA-Angell’s Law Enforcement Department worked with the Hampden County District Attorney’s Office to charge Nancy L. Golec with four counts of felony animal cruelty. Golec is the former owner of the horses and she was arraigned in Palmer District Court on Monday.

The horses, a 13-year-old Arabian named Shakira and an 11-year-old quarter horse/Arabian cross named Tia, were surrendered and immediately transported to Nevins Farm.

Shakira is walked off the trailer after arriving at Nevins Farm for rehabilitation.
Shakira is walked off the trailer after arriving at Nevins Farm for rehabilitation. (MSPCA-Angell/MSPCA-Angell)

Roger Lauze, the equine rescue training manager at Nevins Farm, said he hasn’t seen such neglect in nearly 40 years of working in horse rescue. “The hooves on these horses were so overgrown and disfigured that it will take years of farrier work for them to reshape—if that’s even possible,” he said.

Both horses had overgrown teeth and their hind legs were caked in manure. Their overgrown hooves contributed to imbalances that have had a significant impact on their health.

The Nevins Farm team is working to rehabilitate both horses in hopes that they can be placed up for adoption.

Anyone interested in adopting Shakira or Tia can email barnstaff@mspca.org.

Those who want to contribute to the horses’ medical bills can donate here.