Pierce County prosecutors have charged a Gig Harbor man with two counts of animal cruelty in neglecting his horses, one of which had to be euthanized.
The 41-year-old man is to be arraigned March 31.
A resident called animal control officers in May 2014 to report an underweight horse with a badly injured leg wandering loose near Wright-Bliss Road KPN and 144th Street KPN.
An animal control officer figured out where the horse lived and noticed four other horses in a pasture that was mostly dirt. The officer believed the horses looked too thin and left a note for the owner to call.
Never miss a local story.
“He admitted that his horses were underweight but asserted they were ‘not terrible,’ ” according to charging papers.
He claimed to be treating the horse’s leg injury himself but animal control officers said it required professional medical treatment.
The owner also admitted he hadn’t floated the horses’ teeth in the four years he owned them, which is necessary for them to consume and grind food, records show.
Three horses were seized and treated by a veterinarian.
A horse named Polka was declared very thin and blind and was euthanized because of its condition. The horse Kharma was found to be emaciated. The third horse, Pontiac, also was thin but in better condition than the others.
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653