Housley, who also goes by the name Rebecca Haile, is charged with two counts of felony ill treatment of animals. The charges stem from the January seizure of two Thoroughbred mares from Housley’s Kennerleigh Farm.
Housley signed ownership of the mares and a foal over to the Charleston Animal Society. Days later she relinquished ownership of another nine horses.
Court documents obtained by Rate My Horse PRO state a bay Thoroughbred named Glory was seized due to substandard living conditions and neglect. The 16-year-old mare scored a 1 on the Henneke Body Condition Score (BCS). A BCS of 1 on the 1-9 scale means the horse is emaciated with no body fat.
The veterinarian’s assessment found a heart murmur, overgrown hooves with full-length cracks, rain rot, cellulitis, and a painful stifle. The mare was nursing a 4 to 6-week-old foal by Housley’s Irish-bred stallion. The vet noted the foal was thin.
A 5-year-old Thoroughbred mare named Goose had a BCS of 2, severe rain rot, overgrown hooves, and scratches on all four pasterns. Dental and parasite evaluations were not completed at the time of the reports.
This isn’t the first time the dressage and eventing professional has been accused of horse cruelty. In 2010, the county removed six of Housley’s horses alleging neglect. Housley was running the College of Charleston horseback riding program and boarded horses.
No charges were filed and Housley’s Irish Sport Horse stallion was returned to her in a deal with the solicitor’s office. She gave up custody of the five seized horses and paid over $6,500 for their care.
We spoke with Housley briefly Wednesday. She said she knew nothing about the indictment, but would not comment further regarding her pending case. Our call to her attorney was not returned.