The horses were among 300 animals confiscated from the farm on August 7th after pictures taken by a former employee and published in newspaper Blick showed severely malnourished and mistreated horses at the property.
Since then the animals have been cared for by recruits at the Swiss army’s veterinary training centre in Schonbühl in the canton of Bern.
The colonel in charge of the operation, Jürg Liechti, last week told the press that the animals had arrived dirty, unkempt, unshod and nervous, while some were seriously emaciated. It may take years before some of the horses behaved normally again, he said.
However ten days after they were rescued, the Thurgau cantonal vet is putting the animals up for sale on Thursday, August 17th, it announced.
According to Liechti, the army centre can’t house the horses beyond August 18th.
The speed of the sale has angered some, including Animal Protection Switzerland (PSA).
“We are sad and angry about the failure of the Thurgau authorities, who show with this precipitous action that they are indifferent to animal welfare,” it said in a statement.
Liechti stressed that the horses would not be sold at a cut price, and that future buyers should have not only enough money but the time and a suitable space to care for the animals properly, reported ATS.
Every horse has been microchipped and their future care will be monitored carefully, the Thurgau authorities told the press.
Since the horses were seized, the Thurgau veterinary service has received hundreds of calls from people wanting to buy one or donate money for their welfare, they said.
Those that are not sold on Thursday won’t be kicked out of the army barracks, said Liechti, though he did not give details of how they would be housed.
The sale will be held at the Schönbuhl barraks from 9am on Thursday. Interested parties should simply turn up. Further details will be released on the day.