(WMC) - Rescuers in Lauderdale County found horses on a farm in Gates, Tenn. that appear to be malnourished and neglected.
'Horrendous' is the word animal rescuers use to describe what they found on a pasture last Friday.
When they arrived, rescuers immediately began taking pictures showing the bones protruding from these horses' bodies.
"We're worried they're gonna continue to suffer ... and die," Lori Collins with Redemption Road Rescue said.
Late last week, members of Redemption Road Rescue came out to feed and water the horses.
"When we got here Friday, the horses, a few of them, were in dire conditions," Melissa Floyd added.
The horses were staying on Tommy Willette's pasture. Willette says he's tried to take care of them himself because the owner hasn't been.
"The horses have not been fed properly, cared for properly for about the last six to seven months," Willette said.
Lauderdale County's animal control officer says he started receiving complaints about the malnourished horses in mid-July.
He says he's meeting with the district attorney and other officials about the case Wednesday.
"We're worried about them. We're worried whether or not they got medical care on Friday night or Saturday morning when they were removed," Collins said.
Rescuers say the horses were taken from the pasture over the weekend.
While rescuers don't know where the horses are, Lauderdale County's animal control officer says they were moved to a safe place where they are being fed and watered properly.
"You can't just go feed a horse that's been malnourished good food all the sudden, otherwise, they'll get colic and die," Willette added.
A veterinarian is set to examine the horses this week.
Once the report is finished, it'll be turned over to authorities who will decide whether or not charges will be filed against the horses' owner.