Two of the 27 horses seized from a Princeton farm in September have died, the BC SPCA said.
The horses, along with 46 puppies, 21 adult dogs and three cats were rescued by BC SPCA special constables Sept. 22. The animals were moved to BC SPCA facilities in Kelowna and Penticton while the horses were moved to the Interior Provincial Exhibition grounds in Armstrong for care.
“We feared the worst for many of the horses and it breaks my heart to say that we lost two of them,” the alert reads. “Others are still fighting for their lives.”
Although the full vet costs have yet to be totalled, BC SPCA expects care, food and shelter alone will likely exceed $20,000. Donations are being accepted to help cover the costs.
“It was all heartbreaking, but seeing how these animals were wasting away has been the most heart-wrenching,” the BC SPCA wrote.
Eight puppies have since died from parvovirus enteritis.
“Unfortunately, most of the puppies who came into our care were suffering from the canine parvovirus, a highly contagious viral illness that affects dogs, particularly puppies between six weeks and six months old,” Marcie Moriarty, chief prevention and enforcement officer for the BC SPCA said Thursday, Oct. 1.
Thirty-three of the seized puppies and one adult dog received emergency treatment for the virus that causes infectious gastrointestinal illness.
The medical costs to care for the animals are rising to the tune of more than $100,000 for the rescue agency.
The owner of the animals is known to the BC SPCA.
“We have definitely had dealings with this individual before and have seized numerous animals from her. It is extremely frustrating because she frequently moves between properties and is known to hide animals from authorities,” Moriarty said.
RCMP were called when BC SPCA workers were met with resistance from the Old Hedley Road property owner last month.
“As the file is still very much active and we are gathering all of the best medical and physical evidence we can, we are not yet in a position to provide the file to crown for their decision on charges. It is our intent to provide a robust investigative package to Crown with recommendations for charges, but ultimately, it will be up to them on how to proceed,” Moriarty said.