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A cruelty charge is pending against the owner of four miniature horses and one full-sized horse that were found living in cramped and filthy conditions on Newton Road in Orchard Park, the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals reported.

The five horses were found living in a chain-link dog-style kennel, with no room to run, in deep mud, with a strong odor of urine and feces and no bedding, SPCA officials said.

"We checked on them several times, and the conditions had not improved," said Patty Burg, assistant farm manager for the SPCA. "They were essentially deplorable, the way they were living."

The horses were confiscated and taken to the SPCA.

SPCA Special Agent Charles Braun said that a cruelty-to-animals charge under the state Agriculture and Markets Law was being processed today against the horses' owner, identified as Carolyn Ortman. She apparently does not live at that Orchard Park address.

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