Questions Remain After Animals Pulled From Fallen Horses Rescue

by | 02.24.2015 | 7:55am
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A little over a week after 33 malnourished horses were removed from the custody of Fallen Horses Inc., questions still linger about how the situation disintegrated without anyone knowing about the rescue's troubles.

HiCaliber Horse Rescue has already relocated 25 horses from the Fallen Horses facility, and a spokesperson told the Hesperia Star last week that all those removed so far scored 1 or 2 on the Henneke Body Condition Scoring System; the others are due to be collected soon.

The president of Fallen Horses, Traci Hutmier, lost her job recently and began giving much of her own money to the rescued animals, but that was not a sustainable plan in the long term, and she claimed she did not have enough support from donations. The rescue's board of directors quit at some point, according to Hutmier, though they reformed after news of the horses' poor condition began making headlines. It's unknown who, besides Hutmier, was aware that the horses were starving, or whether Hutmier's actions could be perceived as criminal by the county's district attorney.

San Bernardino County Animal Control was reportedly monitoring the horses' situation, but did not issue any kind of public call for help–a move that the Star criticized in an opinion piece published this week.

As soon as the news became public, donations poured in to HiCaliber to provide hay and medical supplies for the malnourished animals.

Read more at the Hesperia Star

  • ruled off

    This is so sad Alot of time must go into fundraising. The Board quit on this facility.

  • Marlaine Meeker

    I am always so sadden by this kind of news and why action was not taken before these poor horses reached the body score of 1 and 2. This does not happen overnight or even a few weeks. I understand from personal experience that getting law enforcement to respond can be very difficult. Possibly our best bet is to notify local tv, radio,newspapers, and social medias. Thank you HiCaliber Horse Rescue for stepping up.

  • faithhill1

    Didn’t the “Fallen Horses” BOD have meetings or discussions on these TB’s? Where is the business plan for this 501C3? Amazing is the fact that the BOD knew nothing like this was going on? Body score of 1 and 2 does not happen overnight.. Thanks to the crew at HiCaliber Horse Rescue for stepping up to the plate.

  • Pop N Go

    Horse slaughter is bad? But morons can keep “rescuing “. Give me a break!

    • Gaye Goodwin

      Nice name you got there, Pop! (kinda says a lot) Guess your theory is to be like Japan: run them until they cannot run and them eat them. Thankfully, your opinion remains a minority about OTTBs.

    • reality check

      Yes, horse slaughter is bad – on many levels. But this article isn’t about the slaughter debate.

      Rescue is an invaluable part of our society, be it for horses, cats, dogs, etc. The overwhelming number of people involved in rescue are people who give their heart and soul to the care and rehab of animals every second of every day. They fix what others break or discard or both. Morons? Not in the slightest. Are there rescues out there that are not doing what they should be? Absolutely. That said, the vast majority are on the up and up and do wonders with less money than they actually need. They work themselves to exhaustion to save those in their care. Unfortunately, sometimes these good people have a problem, financial – mental – location – whatever, and things like this happen. Thankfully, the situation was found out and another RESCUE stepped up for the horses and has done well by them. The issue here for me is that the board members knew of a deteriorating situation and did not raise the alarm. Maybe they tried and live in an area where the animal neglect/abuse laws are lax. I’m just glad the horses are okay now. Maybe rescue is stupid to you but if you hold such low regard for horses, maybe you should find something else with which to involve yourself. Maybe if owners/caregivers were more responsible, there would be no need for rescues. And no, I’m not a PETA/HSUS person at all. But I do believe in doing right by them.

  • ponyrider

    This is ridiculous. If you have fallen on hard times, you reach out and ask for help. I’m livid at the condition these horses are in. That does not happen overnight, or in just a matter of weeks. Absolutely unacceptable for anyone, but even more so for a rescue.

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