Babcock, Wisconsin – A horse was starved to death in rural Wisconsin, but Assistant District Attorney Michael Zel, who was assigned the case, says he is too busy to decide whether or not to file charges. Roy, an elderly horse, was first found wandering along a highway. The lady who found him walked him two miles to a friend’s house, and then called authorities. The authorities were able to find Roy’s owner and he picked him up.
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Wood County Humane Officer Nanci Olson performed a checkup visit on Roy’s home, and was horrified by what she found. Roy, and his pasture companion, were standing knee deep in mud and manure, Roy was emaciated, covered in rain rot, and only had a round bale of hay black with mold for feed. Roy’s owner voluntarily surrendered him, as he was no longer able to be ridden and had no value to his owner.
Karen and Scott Bayerl, directors of Midwest Horse Welfare Foundation, picked up Roy and took him to their rescue. Dr. Gary Johnson, of Corriente Veterinary Service, examined Roy and gave the couple a treatment plan. “Allowing a horse to slowly starve to death, as Roy had been, is by definition cruel and inhumane,” Dr Johnson wrote in a report submitted to the DA.
Roy seemed to be doing ok, but a few days after arriving at the rescue he went down in his stall and was unable to get up. He organs had already began shutting down when he came to the rescue, and there was nothing that could be done to save his life. “A horse cannot get any skinnier than this and still be standing,” Dr Johnson wrote in the report given to the District Attorney. “Roy was one of the most severely emaciated horses that I have encountered in my career.”
Humane Officer Nanci Olson submitted a request for felony animal abuse prosecution with the Wood County District Attorney on October 12. The DA’s office has yet to file charges, and cites a heavy workload and too few attorneys working in the office. “This case and every other case are important and we do our best to get to them as soon as possible, even though it hasn’t got a deadline,” Assistant District Attorney Michael Zell told reporters.
Original Story and Photos: Daily TribuneAuthor: Dale Williams <-- Become my friend on Facebook! - Phone: 724-964-6773
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