A horse rescue group based near Sherwood Park in Alta, Canada, has taken a herd of 33 malnourished horses into its care.

The herd, which consisted of three stallions, 24 pregnant mares and six very young foals, was rescued by the Alberta SPCA on 20 February and taken to the Rescue 100 Foundation to be nursed back to health.

All of the horses were emaciated, many had cuts or limps, and eight were close to death.

“It is a disgusting case and it makes me so sad,” Susan Fyfe, founder of Rescue 100 Foundation, told local papers.

“If people get into a situation where they can’t afford to keep their horses, they should cry out for help and the public will help.”

On 12 February, the centre took in 17 neglected horses that had been seized from Carrot Creek near Edmonton. A woman now faces charges under the Animal Protection Act.

The charity was founded after 100 Arabian horses were rescued from a farm near Edmonton in 2008, the largest seizure of horses in Alberta SPCA history.