Police find 71 neglected animals, including several that were dead, at animal rescue; owner faces charges

The owner of a Flemington animal rescue faces charges after police found 71 animals they say were neglected.

News 12 Staff

Jun 1, 2022, 4:27 PM

Updated 784 days ago


The owner of a Flemington animal rescue faces charges after police found 71 animals they say were neglected.
Michael Featherston, of Flemington, faces animal cruelty and illegal gun charges.  
The animals included a horse, cows and goats in what police say were poor living conditions. Several dead animals were also found.
Most of the 71 farm animals removed from Hunterdon County needed to be split up, under new care from more than a dozen rescue farms.
Two of the horses are now being nursed back to health at a farm in Colts Neck.
"It's a huge undertaking just from law enforcement and rescue, not one rescue can take on something like this," says Lesley Luckhardt, with Bluemont Equine Sanctuary.
Lesley and Carl Luckhardt's Bluemont Equine Sanctuary now has two new lifelong guests – Stevie and Jane. Rescued from deplorable conditions, both horses arrived at the farm in need of care – severely malnourished, infected with lice and with overgrown feet. They now join her other 29 equine animals.
"You have your initial upfront care and then you get them healthy, nice and fat, and then routine care for life, which hopefully is a very long time," says Lesly.
Lesley and Carl's rescue is also considered a sanctuary, which means Stevie and Jane will never be separated and will live out the rest of their lives right on the property.

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