STOCKTON, CA - The San Joaquin County Sheriff's Department is trying to determine why five horses were allowed to die in a field near Tracy. Two more horses were still alive, and taken to an animal clinic in Oakdale.
The horses were discovered Thursday morning by a driver who called the Alameda County Sheriff's Department. San Joaquin officials were eventually brought in when it was determined the property was in San Joaquin County, and not Alameda.
Sheriff's spokesman Les Garcia said investigators located the owner Thursday afternoon and were questioning him. Garcia also said it wasn't clear if the horses died through neglect, or because the animal owner was suddenly called away and unable to care for the animals.
Animal officials said it takes just a few days for a horse to die from thirst. A water trough was located near the dead animals, but the trough was dry.