A horse with maggot-infested wounds was dumped on a California roadside and left to endure a storm with rain, hail and high winds.
The emaciated bay gelding, aged about 25, was euthanized at the scene.
The SPCA for Monterey County is now offering a $US1000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons who abandoned the horse on Saturday.
It described the case as heartbreaking.
The animal was found loose on Compagna Way off Elkhorn Road in Prunedale.
An anonymous witness reported seeing a pickup truck with an older, white, two-door trailer abandon the horse around 10pm.
The horse, possibly a quarter horse cross, suffered from fistulous withers, which is a painful, chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by pus-filled wounds and swelling.
The wound was infested with maggots.
Horses can score from 1 to 9, with 5 being ideal weight.
In addition, his teeth had not been cared for in quite some time and he suffered from a fungal infection all over his body.
Due to the severity of the horse’s neglect, Monterey County Equine veterinary services was called to the scene by the SPCA.
The veterinarian who performed a physical examination of the horse felt that, due the severity of his condition, extreme pain, and grave prognosis, the best course was humane euthanasia at the scene.
The bay gelding had a white star off to left of his face and one white sock on his left hind leg.
Got information? Call the Monterey County Sheriff’s Department at 831-755-5111 or the SPCA at 831-373-2631. All calls are confidential.