Animal Control officer Frank Ringelberg said each of the horses was 200 to 500 pounds underweight. The animals were taken to an undisclosed location for housing and care.
Ringelberg said he found the horses on land off N.C. Highway 705 while helping Moore County deputies return a stolen horse to its owner. He estimated that the animals hadn't been properly fed for at least three months.
The horses' owners, Johnny Baxter McCaskill Jr. and Tony English Jr., have been charged with failure to nourish.