DAVIE (CBSMiami) – Police found the 21 neglected horses on a three acre property on SW 139th Avenue, rescue volunteers called it a horse mill. Two horses were removed from the property a year ago because of a similar complaint.
Instead of a fence, the owner of the ranch where they were found had put up charged electrical wire to keep them on the property. Cutino said the horses were very skittish from being shocked.
The most skittish of the horses was a three month old.
“That baby that’s three months old was born into that. So she has no idea what it’s like to be clean,” said Cutino. “We are having trouble with her now trying to get her friendly and also trying to bathe her.”
The owner of the property where the horses were found said he couldn’t afford to take care of them anymore, according to Cutino who added it will take months to return the horses to health so they can be adopted out.
“We’ve been picking up brushes and we’re going to start grooming them. We’ve been bringing in extra feed and bedding to try and help them whatever way we can,” said volunteer Bettina Ratner
Davie Police were tipped off by a neighbor who spotted the malnourished animals.
The owner of the horses, Benjamin Mantilla, didn’t answer his door Monday but reportedly told police he just couldn’t afford to take care of the horses.
“Something severe needs to be done to these people not just fining them $500 or a $1,000, giving them a slap in the hand,” said Cutino. “We need to do more because this has got to stop.”
Herbert McQuay, who mows the lawn next door, said he was constantly throwing his mowings over the fence to the horses.
“I was feeding them. But he stopped me,” said McQuay. Why? I don’t know.”
Davie police will bring in a veterinarian to examine each horse. Based on those findings they will come up with what charges to level against the horses’ owner.
For technical reasons Mantilla wasn’t charged. Davie Police say this time around will likely be different.
“I would hate to see an officer go out there and arrest him on a misdemeanor animal neglect charge when it’s in fact animal cruelty and it need to be a felony,” said Captain Dale Engle. “So as a police department we are going to do everything we can to make sure that the proper charges are brought forward against this man.”
If you are interested in helping out or perhaps even adopting one, visit www.peacefulridgerescue.com.