A horse and donkey rescue shelter in Glennwood, IA is feeling the pain of the cold winter months.
Genea Stoops, the owner of Hooves and Paws Rescue says they've been hit with a shortage of space and increase in hay prices.
The shelter currently cares for 31 horses and donkeys, including seven mini horses that have sicknesses or injuries and are being rehabilitated. After a tough winter, Stoops said more horses are in need of rescue.
"We're starting to deal with a lot of neglect cases coming out of winter. It was a hard winter for us," said Stoops.
With the bitter cold, Stoops said extra hay and straw was needed to feed the horses and keep the minis warm in their stalls. With the demand in hay, the feed costs increased.
"Now we're cutting into spring, and nobody's cut their hay so we're using last year's hay, which is not unusual but there's a lot of high prices on the hay and not everyone can afford it," added Stoops.
Stoops says in Nebraska and Iowa, hay typically costs $4 to $5 a bale, but with the demand, prices have gone up to $7-$9 per bale.
"There are neglect cases, and then there's people who are trying really hard and can't get hay. If we're having trouble finding hay, then I know others having trouble getting hay," said Stoops.
There's now a waiting list of horses owners want to surrender to the shelter, but for now, Stoops is trying to get them more hay in the meantime.
The horses also need spring shots which will cost the shelter at least $2,100.
You can learn more about the organization on their website.