(Edited press release)
Fans coming to Saratoga Race Course Aug. 26 will be able to help the almost 200 Thoroughbred horses recently rescued from a Greene County Farm. In April, 2009, police raided the Climax, N.Y. farm of horse breeder Ernest Paragallo who has been arraigned on 35 counts of animal cruelty, accused of failing to adequately care for the horses at his farm.
Since that raid, about 70 of the horses have been adopted, including Smog City, now known as Diva; and Black Jean Val, now known as Sweet Pea, who were adopted by Mary Anne Macica of Saratoga Springs.
“The story broke my heart,” said Macica. “Since May, when we brought these two horses to our barn, it’s been a joy seeing them return to the healthy animals they once were.”
In an effort to assist more horses Macica has put together an information/fund drive at the race course to assist the Columbia-Greene Humane Society/SPCA with equine cruelty intervention, including the horses rescued from the Greene County farm.
The information booth will be set up near the Jockey Silks room at Saratoga Race Course.
Since the raid, the shelter has spent tens of thousands of dollars for medical care and feed for the rescued horses.
Dr. Jerry Bilinski, the equine veterinarian who has treated many of these horses said, “The Columbia Greene Humane Society/SPCA is dealing with one of, if not the worst case of equine/horse abuse in history. The magnitude of this abuse has severely stretched the resources of the Columbia-Greene Humane Society beyond its limits. As a result, I would ask that anyone who finds this type of horrific abuse intolerable to please help by coming to the information booth at the race course on August 26, and making a donation.”