Over the past few years, it's become more common for Sumner County Animal Control to take in livestock.
“Horses are probably the next most regular thing. We have had goats and we have had pigs,” said Sgt. Sean Ryan with Sumner County Animal Control.
Animal Control only accepts horses and other livestock from cruelty cases or if they pose a threat to the community.
“We've set ourselves up in a pretty good position to be able to handle the larger animals if the need arises for us to do so,” said Sgt. Ryan.
In February, Animal Control, which is run by the Sumner County Sheriff's Department, rescued Ginger, a five-year-old mare.
“It was a pretty devastating situation. We had to step in, she was very skinny, very malnourished,” Sgt. Ryan told Nashville's News 2.
Most recently, four miniature horses were rescued off of Highway 31.
Sgt. Ryan said, “They had been at large for at least over a 24-hour period. No one had claimed them so we felt we needed to step in and do something.”
Sumner County Animal Control usually turns horses over to non-profit rescue organizations, like the Volunteer Equine Advocates.
However, with Ginger and the mini horses, VEA hasn't had the space.
“If they are out of room or don't have the means or the funds to handle the extra horses, then we try our best to get them adopted out here,” said Sgt. Ryan.
The task to feed and care for these costly, high maintenance animals falls on the department.
“It's got to pretty much be a bad to situation for us to have the larger animals,” said Sgt. Ryan, “we're limited on staff and things like that so we try not to do it no more than we have to.”
Animal Control hopes the rescued horses will soon be adopted and off to new homes.
Sumner County Animal Control does not accept surrendered livestock.
The fee to adopt a horse is $100.
For more information, call 615-452-2400.