Neglected Horse Rescued in Boone County

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BOONE COUNTY (WIFR) -- An investigation is underway regarding a neglected horse in Boone County, much of the horse is skin and bones. We visited the rescue farm where the animal is being treated.

Lora Bertell has been nursing horses back to health for six years on her Belvidere farm. She took in two horses about two and a half weeks ago. She says they were part of a group of 23 horses that were being neglected in Stephenson County.

"Stephenson County did a great job starting to put the weight back on (the horses) and we're just finishing that, then we'll work with training them," says Bertell.

Bertell's latest case is much worse. She took in a 15-year-old horse on Saturday. The horse has wounds and is lacking muscle, his hip bone is sticking out. Bertell says he should gain another 350 pounds to be at a healthy weight.

We can't discuss specific details of the case due to the ongoing investigation, but we do know someone reported the horse to animal services.

Bertell says, "We definitely need concerned citizens to speak up. If you're not sure just call, know that your call will be addressed."

Bertell's focus now is finding resources to get the four-legged survivor healthy. She has 18 horses on her farm and she does receive donations to help care for the animals.

If you're interested in donating or volunteering, you can call Lora Bertell at 815-289-3768, email her at, or you can visit her website or Facebook page by clicking the attached links.

Cherry Valley Feed is also providing an outlet for donations. You can contact the store at 815-332-7665 or visit them at 1595 S. Bell School Rd. in Cherry Valley.

To report animal neglect call the animal services numbers below:

Boone County: (815) 547-7774
Lee County: (815) 284-3833
Ogle County: (815) 732-1185
Stephenson County: (815) 235-8276
Winnebago County: (815) 319-4100

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