Contains graphic photos
In January 2012, a mass rescue effort, including teams from Remember Me Rescue and the Louisiana Horse Rescue Association,
helped rescue dozens of starving thoroughbreds – though it was too late to save
several horses – from terrible living conditions in Many, Louisiana. A year
later, the town has changed, but the situation is similar, if not more
Currently, a large number of starving horses are suffering at Ryder River Ridge
Farm in Natchitoches, Louisiana – about 40 minutes northeast of Many. Ryder
River Ridge Farm is owned by Firal Ryder, a man who greatly loves his horses,
but due to ill health, is in a nursing home. His son, Clay Ryder, is now in
control of farm operations.
Remember Me Rescue and the Louisiana Horse Rescue Association have attempted to
help these horses and when Donna Keen of RMR was prohibited from entering the
property, she promptly arranged for a helicopter to fly her over the farm.
While in the helicopter, Keen photographed the horrific scenes below on the
farm, which included not only starving horses, but skeletons and fresh graves.
While the LHRA now has many of the horses from the farm in custody, several
horses remain and continue to suffer.
Earlier in January, Clay Ryder finally commenced negotiations with authorities,
despite the fact that these horses have been in these terrible conditions for
over a year. The state police became involved following the helicopter fly-over
and also flew over the farm prior to walking the farm and discussing the
situation with the sheriff’s department. The situation, which is marked by lies
and cover-ups, has since become a state police investigation.
As aforementioned, several Thoroughbreds from Ryder River Ridge Farm have been
surrendered to the LHRA, but dozens of horses remain on the farm. With undying
determination, Keen has made offers to take those horses into RMR’s custody,
but has not had success. Nonetheless, Keen has strove to let a larger audience
be aware of the dreadful situation, as evident in her interview with KTBS, the
news station that originally covered the situation.
The investigation is ongoing, as it has been for at least a year. The LHRA and
RMR continue to strive to help these horses and to achieve justice, along with
the help of horse lovers that have contacted authorities and the media. The
Louisiana Horse Rescue Association and Remember Me Rescue can’t do this on
their own. They need your help. These horses need your help.
Photos courtesy of Donna Keen