Eleven-year-old Kathryn Lopes and her stepmom were shopping for horses at the CCSPCA. "We saw they had an overcrowded area of horses and we've been watching the story of the horses in Auberry," Kristi Lopes said.
Lopes was talking about the some two dozen horses found near Prather in Fresno County. All of them were starving and in desperate need of care. A rescue group took some of the horses and the Central California SPCA took four of them, as they needed immediate help. CCSPCA says the horses taken from Auberry are not the only horses at their facility.
Beth Caffrey, Director of Community Relations for the CCSPCA says, "These are large numbers for us to house all at once."
While they will never turn animals away, they admit it is a juggling act in order to make room. Right now, there are 37 horses from 5 different investigations filling the stables at the CCSPCA.
As for the reason behind the increase in abuse cases, the CCSPCA says there are a number of factors; the economy, and the weather. Some people hope their animals will feed solely on what's growing outside.
"They're turned out to pasture a lot of times and we've had a drought here so there's nothing in the pasture." Caffery said "Veterinary care has sky-rocketed. The cost of vaccines and all the things you need to provide, a lot of things have continued to rise in cost but the economy hasn't turned around."
Some of the horses being housed at the CCSPCA have been there for more than a year. They're hoping the free adoption incentives will bring people to their stables, people who hopefully want to find any of these animals a new home.
As for Kathryn and her stepmom, they are having a hard time choosing just one horse.
"It's heartbreaking, we just want to come and save them all and you can't," Lopes said.
Those looking to adopt will have to fill out a questionnaire and prove that they have room and can care for a horse.