Update: Three abandoned horses adopted

Reporter: Al Pefley

Updated: A Loxahatchee woman, saddled with a real burden, says she's gotten hundreds of calls from the public offering to help.

We told you about Shannon Reilly earlier this week. She took in seven horses a month ago from a California couple who said they were moving to Florida. But after they dropped the animals off, the couple vanished.

Worried about mistreatment, Reilly is keeping the horses and has setup a fund to help with expenses. To help call Lazy Acre Farm at 561-289-0096.

Since our story first aired, three of the horses have been adopted.

Previously: The new year starts off with a real challenge for one Loxahatchee woman. She's a kindhearted person, who loves and cares for horses, but she's dealing with far more horses than she ever bargained for.

It's not unusual this time of the year to have a few holiday guests dropping by. But these guests have been here almost a month now, and no one's sure how much longer they'll be staying.

Shannon Reilly, a horse trainer and riding instructor, took in seven horses in early December. A couple from California had them and wanted to keep them with her because they were moving to Florida. So, Shannon agreed to take them in temporarily. That was December 3. She hasn't seen them since.

They simply vanished without paying leaving her with seven horses.

Shannon says under the law, the horses are now considered abandoned and are hers. She owns them, but cannot afford to feed and take care of them. "They basically made it seem like they were coming back with money which they never did."

She says friends have been helping her care for them and have dropped off hay and other supplies for the horses which were in bad shape when they arrived. "[They were] dehydrated and underweight. I can't believe someone would travel with horses 3,000 miles - horses in bad condition no less - and then just leave them here. To me, it seems absurd!"

At least for now, she needs more hay because each of these animals eats, well, like a horse, and it's getting expensive. "At first, I was angry. Now, I'm more frustrated, and I feel really, really bad for the animals that they have been the victims here."

Shannon says she has filed a police report with the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office. She could turn the horses over to animal care and control, but she has decided not to do that because she fears the couple from California could then get them back, and they would be subjected to further mistreatment.

If you'd like to help with a fund that's being set up or if you want to adopt a horse, call Shannon Reilly at Lazy Acre Farm at 561-289-0096.