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Volunteer firefighters help an emaciated horse named Clarissa stand by installing a stall sling. Photos by Last Chance Ranch
A Pennsylvania equine veterinarian is facing multiple counts of animal cruelty after authorities received a tip regarding dead and emaciated horses. Clyde Rendell Shoop, V.M.D., the owner of Poco West Mobile Equine Services, was charged with 11 summary offenses Wednesday, according to court documents.
Shoop’s estranged wife, Kimberly Shoop, of Palmerton, is also charged. She lives on the Carbon County property where the animals were found. It is owned by the Jim Thorpe vet, who is known locally as Dr. ‘Renny’ Shoop.
Pennsylvania State Police obtained a search warrant for the property in late January. The last of sixteen horses were removed from the property Monday. Nine were in critical condition. To date, three of the equines have died or been euthanized.
The most emaciated horses, including a mare named Clarissa, got out first. Starving, dehydrated, and unable to stand — the mare was transported laying down.
Quakertown’s Last Chance Ranch (LCR) is one of the rescue organizations caring for multiple animals. The group sought a few good men to help Clarissa stand with the assistance of a sling.
Volunteer firefighters from the Richlandtown Fire Company answered the call to help the gaunt chestnut. Without the sling to get her on her feet she would have died.
Clarissa has a long road ahead, but she is standing on her own. Her fighting spirit has already made her a fan favorite on social media.
Other horses didn’t escape the death camp. Authorities say they found the remains of several decomposed horses. Three were under pallets, two were in the pasture, and another was under a partially burned mattress. A pit was the final resting place for two more horses, a dog, goat, two sheep, and a lamb. It is not known how the animals died.
Additional charges could be brought for the improper disposal of the animals’ remains.
Authorities also removed 20 sheep, 10 dogs, a calf, pig, raccoon, wild turkey, two alligators, a boa constrictor, and several birds. The Shoops did not claim ownership of many of the animals.
Dr. ‘Renny’ Shoop was charged with four counts of animal cruelty and two counts of tampering with evidence in 2009, but the case was ultimately dismissed.
According to a Times-News report, the filing officer alleged the veterinarian housed four horses “in filthy conditions with manure up to their knees” without food or water. A judge dismissed the case when no expert witness was available.
Shoop has also been in trouble with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs for practicing veterinary medicine with an expired license. He was ordered to pay $500.