HOOPER -- Upset by a news story earlier in the week, Tarryn Galloway felt inspired to help pay for expensive reconstructive surgery for a horse she had never met before.
"I will adopt that horse," she said. "I will take it in and see that it has the surgery it needs."
She volunteered to take the animal with no questions asked to the owner.
"He would have the best home ever," Galloway said of the corral and 2 acres near her home where she boards two rescued horses she already rescued.
The horse Galloway is referring to was found in Farmington with its head grown around a halter that had been left on the animal for a long time as it matured. The horse was discovered Sunday by bike riders as they cycled past a pasture. The area had other horses that showed signs of neglect, the witnesses said.
An unidentified spokesman with the Humane Society of Utah called the incident the most inhumane animal treatment he had seen in decades.
Galloway said responsible people should never allow such pain and suffering to occur to an innocent animal, especially when there are people on the sidelines who would take an unwanted animal.
Galloway has previously adopted two horses that came from abusive situations, and she knows of others who have done the same.
A member of the Back Country Horsemen of Utah and the Weber County Search and Rescue mounted team, Galloway uses her horses to perform community service, including cleaning up trails in the back country to keep them usable for many different purposes.
But earlier this week, she was tracking down information about the horse that had suffered because of a halter left on it.
"I tracked down the people who found the horse," she said, noting that she had left her contact information with their children.
"I couldn't find the horse," she said.
Galloway said she noticed a number of people had posted, on various media outlets, their feelings of rage about the incident and have made threats against the owner.
"I would think that halter has been on that horse for two years or longer,"
On Tuesday, Galloway said she was afraid the owner would have the horse put to sleep.
Galloway believes she is one of several people who offered to adopt the horse; and she left her contact information with Davis County Animal Control. She said officials there offered to forward her information to the horse owner.
Clint Thacker, director of Davis County Animal Control, confirmed that an "overwhelming" number of people had called offering to do what they could for the horse. He noted that some had offered to purchase the horse and others had offered to pay for the surgery.
He said such responses by the public are common when stories of that type are in the news.
"I'm glad that people have called in wanting to help," Thacker said. "The sad thing would be if nobody called."
Thacker said Wednesday that the horse was in the care of an area veterinarian.
"The halter has been removed, and the horse is recovering," he said.
Thacker would not release the name of the horse owner, who is keeping the animal. He said the name is being held as the case is still under investigation. But Thacker said the horse owner received a criminal citation with two offenses -- neglect and causing pain and suffering to an animal.
Thacker said he didn't know the age of the horse.
But Galloway said the horse must have been young for it to have grown larger while wearing a small halter.
"This was a colt halter," she said. "The halter would have to have been on for two years or more."
Some area horse owners said the situation showed a lack of knowledge on the part of the horse owner.
"They tell you that you shouldn't have a halter on a horse unless you are tying it somewhere and you plan to watch it," said Kris Clark, who is the leader of the Hooper Purple Sage 4-H Club.
Missey Rawson, whose children were practicing with the Hooper Renegade's Posse on Tuesday night, said a horse can catch its halter on something in a pasture and choke if it isn't attended.
"If (the owner) was paying attention, he would have seen it," she said.
Galloway said she has known of many instances of abuse. Both of the horses she now owns, she said, were removed from neglectful situations by animal control officers.
She said one of her horses, who is 18, was found 400 pounds underweight, and animal control personnel couldn't afford to bring it back into shape.
The other horse, a 12-year-old, was abused after a divorce.
Galloway said the wife, who was given custody of the horse, abandoned the animal, leaving it to eat whatever it could find in an overgrazed pasture.
"If they don't want them," Galloway said, "they should give them to people who do."