Greene County Sheriff's Office investigates claims of animal abuse

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ROGERSVILLE, Mo. Neighbors in Rogersville are outraged over the treatment of a three day old foal.

A reserve sheriff's deputy from a neighboring county took a picture of what looks like obvious signs of neglect. Some say this isn't the first time the horse's owner has been accused of mistreating his animals.

Monday afternoon, detectives with the Greene County Sheriff's Office arrived at the property at the corner of Farm Roads 186 and 219 to investigate claims of abuse and neglect. We must warn you, the image of the foal is disturbing.

"We were driving by and we saw the horse lying down right there next to the road," says Michael Markley.

The foal was in bad condition just a few days ago.

"It was skin and bones. You could see the orbital sockets in its eyes. Its eyes were sunken in. So that was rather a concern because obviously it was malnourished," says Markley.

He and his wife found the newborn.

"We snuck up on the property and we had the bottle. We went and bought the milk for the foal," he says.

The situation, desperate for foal.

I even offered to write up a bill of sale and give that to Doug (the owner) and he didn't call me back at all. I was trying to go about it the right way. We have the ability to take care of some horses," he explains

When they came back to feed it again, it was gone.

“I'm just trying to figure out why this is occurring," he says.

The picture has been floating around social media sites, sparking outrage. Markley even offered to take the animal. He wasn't the only one.

"Had I known earlier, days ago, when everybody else knew, I would have been out there with the police, news, whatever I would have had to have done to get that baby the help it needed," says Tammy Cook.

She runs CMT Serenity Horse Rescue and has rehabbed dozens of animals.

"Sometimes we get some in that they've been abused bad enough that they don't trust anybody. It takes us a while to earn their trust and let them know hey, not everybody's bad," she says.

Markley says it's not the first time this has happened.

"The first time was last year about the same time. I didn't notice the malnourishment of the horse last year. This is the first time that I've noticed this. With that being said, I didn't do anything about it but all of the sudden it was gone," he says.

He wants the owner to be held responsible.

"Greene County's on it and hopefully we can get what's coming to Doug Miller," he says.

If anyone sees any signs of animal abuse when it comes to horses, he sheriff's office should be called first. Then, any rescue groups that may be able to step in to help.

Detectives are still trying to figure out what happened to the foal. They aren't sure if it's still alive or not.

We did try to call the horse's owner, Doug Miller for his side of the story. Our calls have not been returned yet.