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21 horses removed from Mercer farm

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MERCER, Pa.- A woman who asked for help with her horses says she was shocked when the Mercer Humane Society removed eight of them Sunday.

Nicole Rust shows us about a thousand dollars in veterinary bills she has incurred, trying to find out why a few of her horses were getting sick.

According to Rust, the rest of the 21 horses were seized by the Humane Society on Tuesday evening.

She tells us two different veterinarians asked if they had rat poison anywhere around.

She says since they don't they believe someone is poisoning her animals.
 
She explains that's why she called the Humane Society for Help saying she can not afford the autopsy to find out if someone was poisoning her horses.

But when the Mercer Humane Police Officer came out he ended up removing eight horses from a farm on Sunday.

The Humane Officer says the animals were underweight, had black water, hay with mold, and two were penned in with manure almost knee deep.

He adds if the barn caught fire two of the horses would have no way to escape.

The owner says two were penned in, but says the horses were not eating moldy hay since the outer section of the hay is removed.

Marvin Stickney says the manure needed cleaned in their makeshift stalls but says it was not up to the horses knees.

Stickney says the tubs are black making the water appear black but adds the water was clean.
 
The barns outside their home were filled with hay, bags of grain, and supplements to help gain weight.

They tell us six horses were given to them this year, and even though the oldest is 29 years old there is no way they would think of shipping him to the glue factory or putting him down.

Nicole Rust says the horses are her kids, adding there is nothing she wouldn't do for them. Rust says she will do for the horses before she does something for herself.

She is upset and tells us she never got any notices outlining what needed to be fixed with a time frame to remedy the problem and she wants her horses back.
 
The Mercer Humane Police officer says the case is under investigation and the owners will be cited.

He adds whether the owners get their horses back will likely be determined by the court.

 

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