VERGAS, Minn. - Inhumane conditions resulted in law enforcement seizing 11 horses and three llamas last week from a farm six miles southeast of Vergas. An additional six horses were found dead.
One of the rescued llamas, a baby, later died at the rescue ranch from complications of septicemia, probably due to a lack of colostrum, which is found in a healthy mother’s breast milk. Criminal charges were pending against the owners of the farm, Bill and Penny Fick.
The rescued animals were taken to High Tail Horse Ranch and Rescue near Hawley to begin a long road to recovery. There were six quarter horses, a draft horse, a pony, an Arabian and two paints.
High Tail owner Charlotte Tuhy said the animals were in “various stages of hunger and underweight. Some of them are in quite a bit of pain.” She and volunteers from the ranch worked on the rescue with the Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Department and the Minnesota Humane Society.