Authorities seized 27 animals from the Animal Angels Horse Rescue ranch in Fort Collins Saturday.
Larimer County Sheriff Jim Alderden said the owner faces multiple charges of animal cruelty.
Officials seized 16 horses, ponies and donkeys; five llamas; five pygmy goats; and one potbelly pig from the ranch also known as Freedoms Rescue and Wellness Ranch on North County Road 17.
Ranch owner Alesha Matchett said she, her 9-year-old son and almost 20 volunteers are able to care for the animals -- and that none was mistreated.
Forty-six animals remain at the ranch.
Alderden said he thinks Matchett had good intentions but that many animals at the ranch appeared malnourished, didn't have an adequate food supply or shelter, and water troughs were frozen.
Authorities say the investigation began on Thursday when the Larimer Humane Society and veterinarians from the CSU Vet Teaching Hospital visited Animal Angels Horse Rescue to assess the animals.
A report issued Friday contained a visual assessment of the animals and living conditions. Based on the results a search warrant was issued for the removal of approximately 20 animals.
According to Sheriff Jim Alderden, numerous charges of animal cruelty will be filed with the District Attorney next week. All charges are a class one misdemeanor.
Anyone wishing to help with the feeding of the animals seized, or interested in the possible adoption, should contact the Larimer Humane Society at 970-226-3647. You will need to advise the Humane Society of the resources you have and how many animals you can handle.
If you wish to donate cash to help pay for the feed please contact Poudre Pet And Feed Supply at one of the following locations, 622 N. College Ave., 970-482-2741 or 6204 S. College Ave., 970-225-1255.
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