IOLA, Texas—Neighbors in one Grimes County community are outraged, after they say the owner of five horses has neglected them, and left them to starve.

And, according to some residents, this is not the first time the Sheriff has been called in to investigate.

Kay Pack and other neighbors took to Facebook last week after being called in to help feed, what appeared to be starving horses, outside of Iola.

“Their bellies are distended and their bones are showing,” said Pack.

“When I got here last week, there was no water and water troughs. There was no feed,” she added.

Pack and other neighbors have been taking turns bringing food and water to the horses, and wondering why law enforcement hasn’t stepped in to help.

“We’re not trying to be bad neighbors,” said Pack. “We just want to help the horses because these animals are going to die.”

Sheriff Don Sowell said he’s been in touch with the owner, and his office is currently monitoring the situation.

“I spoke to him and he gave me his word, and a deputy has been out there. As long as he’s trying to make improvements, his word is good with me right now,” said Sowell.

We talked to the owner of those horses, and he said he’s been in the hospital, and family members were supposed to be caring for the animals.

The owner said that now that his health has improved, he’s been feeding the horses twice a day, trying to get them back to good health.

Sheriff Sowell said his livestock officer will be checking in on the horses, but right now, they won’t be seizing the animals.

Neighbors say this is not the first time the Sheriff has been called out to this property for animal cruelty reports.

The Sheriff’s Office released the service reports for that address—and they had two reports in the last two years.

The owner said he won’t surrender his horses, and is taking them for veterinary care soon.

Neighbors say, they just want to save the animals.

“All I want is for these animals to be taken care of,” said Pack.