Woman faces up to 24 counts of animal cruelty after starving donkeys, horses found on property
CHOCTAW, Okla. — Two dozen horses and donkeys were found fighting for their lives, and their owner could face up to 24 counts of felony animal cruelty charges.
“These are some of the worst we have probably seen,” Natalee Cross with Blaze’s Tribute Equine Rescue said.
Ribs were poking out. Harnesses were embedded in their skin. Several barely able to stand up.
More than 20 horses and donkeys now are barely hanging on to survival.
“That’s suffering,” Cross said. “That’s just not right.”
It all started with an eagle-eyed neighbor.
Police were called to a Choctaw home on a report of a starving horse.
That horse allegedly was left to suffer overnight and then became too sick to be saved.
“If we had gotten to her earlier, we maybe could’ve done something but not after she had been down that long,” Cross said.
That original call led Choctaw Police to uncover two dozen more animals, including horses, donkeys, and a six-week-old foal.
“There’s not hardly anything left of them,” Cross said. “They’ve been starved greatly.”
The animals were brought to Blaze’s Tribute Equine Rescue.
Natalee Cross said they were living in confined spaces and some were missing eyes after never receiving medical attention.
“This doesn’t happen overnight,” Cross said.
According to police, 24 counts of felony animal cruelty are set to be filed against the owner, Irma Kendrick.
News 4 wanted to call her and hear her side of the story.
“I have no comments on that goodbye!” Irma Kendrick said.
Court documents show Kendrick told officers “she’s on an extremely fixed income” and “continues to breed and bring in additional horses.”
“To just walk away, that is so disheartening,” Cross said.
Blaze’s Rescue tells News 4 they did rescue two horses from Kendrick’s Midwest City property back in 2012.
They say her new property in Choctaw has over 200 rabbits and 150 chickens.
Blaze’s Rescue is taking care of nearly 200 horses at the moment and relies heavily on donations from the public.