Oct 13, 2012 4:13 PM by AP
LAKE CHARLES, La. (AP) - The horse looked like a skeleton clothed in hide. But it found sanctuary at a rehabilitation program run by the Calcasieu Parish Animal Services and Adoption Center.
The department has two sites where it cares for malnourished horses, giving them a veterinary check-up and a healthy diet.
"Once (horses) make it there, then there's hope for them," Areno said. After a horse gets healthy, Animal Services looks for a good home for it. "We're one of the few parishes in the state, if not the only one, that has a comprehensive program like this," Director Nathan Areno told The American Press. More than 20 horses have been adopted since last year, he said.
He said the department continues finding malnourished horses for several reasons, such as neglect or inability to afford feed and other supplies. "A moderate bag of horse feed - which is around 50 pounds - is at least $10," he said. "That will last about five days."
Arena says the market value of horses has declined, making them easier to buy and harder to sell.
He said reports about stray or malnourished horses in Calcasieu Parish should be made to the Sheriff's Office.