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U.S. rescuers overwhelmed by abandoned horses

LINCOLN, NB (AP) - Horse rescue groups say they are struggling to care for horses abandoned in the drought, and some have stopped taking in more.

Abandonments spiked after the recession hit more than four years ago, but rescue groups say the drought made the problem worse by burning up pastures and sending hay prices skyrocketing.

They say owners who had held on to their horses are giving them up now.

Advocates say no one tracks how many horses are abandoned, but the Washington, D.C.-based Unwanted Horse Coalition estimated the number at 170,000 to 180,000 per year before the drought.

With fewer people buying horses and sanctuaries filling up, Iowa Horse Council President Bill Paynter says, some owners are desperate. He says, "There's no place to go with a horse you can't feed."

Grace Foundation brings attention to their financial plight Monday

Grace Foundation brings attention to their financial plight Monday

The Grace Foundation, who filed a $20 million lawsuit against Wells Fargo Bank and Bank of America last week, brought some horses to a Wells Fargo bank branch Monday to bring attention to their plight.

According to a press release generated by this El Dorado County non-profit animal rescue,  it is "on the verge of bankruptcy and the horses that are at the center of this tragedy are in jeopardy of being returned to their previous owner who is now facing 65 felony counts of abuse and neglect."

The foundation added that they uncovered legal documents revealing “a ten-month trail of lies and deceit perpetrated by the banks and their legal intermediary in a zealous rush to increase their foreclosure assets. The documents not only prove the duplicity perpetrated by Wells Fargo Bank and Bank of America representatives, they also reveal a callous disregard for the lives of these innocent victims of the foreclosure frenzy.

And the "Kids Reading to Pets" Sweepstakes Contest Winner is...

And the "Kids Reading to Pets" Sweepstakes Contest Winner is...

Last month News10 My Neighborhood gave a shout out to our communities and ask you to send us a picture of a child reading to a pet. The pictures were then put into our photo gallery article and the names were submitted into our random drawing, where the winner was to receive a prize.

PHOTOS: Kids Reading to Pets

This contest was part of News10's Reading Connects campaign, which is our effort at improving the literacy rate in our area.

Research has shown that children's reading skills improve when they read to their pets, hence the inspiration for this contest.

The winner of our "Kids Reading to Pets" sweepstakes contest random drawing was Jill, who submitted a picture of her son, Devin, reading to his dog, Jake.

Devin was around a year old when the

Wild animals get tunnel under Highway 50

PLACERVILLE, CA - Hitting a deer, or any other wild animal at high speed can be a very dangerous prospect.

"It can be disastrous for humans and animals," Contractor Doug Veerkamp said.

Veerkamp's company, Doug Veerkamp General Engineering, Inc, is completing work ahead of schedule on a tunnel under Highway 50, near the El Dorado Road exit, that officials hope wildlife will begin using to get to the other side of the highway.

An eight foot tall fence will help funnel the animals to the tunnel entrance.

"From Red Hawk Casino up through Missouri Flat Road, a lot of deer are killed along here," Veerkamp said.

And the problem isn't just deer.

"It could be a deer; it could be a bear; it could be a mountain lion; it could be a raccoon," CalTrans employee Deanna Shoopman said.