Raid allows Horse Haven Tennessee to save 12 animals, includes week-old foal

Rescued horses and mules have been released into their care and are up for adoption.
Published: Apr. 29, 2022 at 5:27 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A raid in East Tennessee rescued a dozen neglected horses and mules. Horse Haven Tennessee worked with state and local law enforcement for the majority of the day Wednesday to load all 12 animals into trailers and brought them to their facility.

“It’s very emotional on our staff and our volunteers in the process of it. What you see on sight,” Horse Haven executive director Ashley Ford said.

Ford said the biggest highlight of the rescue was a week-old foal. The executive director said they do rescue foals from time to time.

There was some positives when Horse Haven helped foals. Ford said the young foal has not endured what the other horses and mules have.

“Our hope is they’re never going to have to see what those older horses have seen on that property. They only have a day or two or just a couple of weeks of not knowing where their next meal is going to come from,” Ford said.

The horses and mules ranged in ages from the week-old foal to a 30-year-old miniature horse. Ford said many of the horses they rescued were either too skinny, too fat or had severely damaged hooves.

Horse Haven’s goal was to bring them all back to full health.

“When they are just completely transformed and they’re happy and they hold their heads higher and there’s a sparkle in their eye. That right there is what makes all of this worth it,” Ford said.

Ford said all of the animals were released into their care and will go up for adoption immediately.

The group worked with law enforcement in some cases, but operates off of donations. For more information on how you can help the cause, click here. Horse Haven is also accepting donations for its Dancing with the Horses event on May 13.

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