GRAMERCY, LA (WVUE) - The Humane Society of Louisiana turns to the FOX 8 Defenders for help. They're trying to find the person who abandoned a malnourished horse and left him to die.
"When we arrived on the scene it was heart-wrenching, I had to take a deep breath, the tears almost immediately started pouring," said Aubrey Stewart, the owner of Wind Dancer Ranch Equine Rescue in Slidell.
Someone spotted the starving horse on the Gramercy levee just before last week's devastating tornadoes. He had been deserted and left in bad shape. The St. James Parish Sheriff's Office investigated and found him in a mud pit, where he had fallen. Deputies eventually got him out and named him "Lucky." But after all that, rescuers still didn't think he was going to make it.
"I seen this frail, frail animal that was a rack of bones, barely able to stand," said Stewart. "It is definitely a long-term neglect-abuse case. He's got a lot of lacerations and marks on his legs, if you look at his legs close. A horse doesn't get this skinny overnight."
Wind Dancer stepped in to help. While they've been working to rehabilitate Lucky, Jeff Dorson, the director of the Humane Society of Louisiana, said they've been working closely with the St. James Parish Sheriff's Office to find the person responsible.
"Unfortunately, we have a huge problem with horses being abandoned, as Lucky was, or horses just being kept alone unsupervised on barren pastures. So our hotline is ringing all the time with different and new complaints," Dorson said.
Rescuers say Lucky is making a remarkable recovery.
"Lucky is definitely, he is definitely a fighter and a survivor," Stewart said.
The Humane Society of Louisiana is passing out fliers and going door-to-door in St. James Parish, hoping to catch the person who abandoned Lucky. They're also offering a $500 reward for information that leads to an arrest and conviction. If you can help, call the St. James Parish Sheriff's Office at (225) 562-2374.