METHUEN, Mass. (WPRI) — The Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) has been scrambling to care for more than a dozen horses that were rescued from an Alford property last week.

The 18 horses were removed from the property as part of an ongoing animal cruelty investigation, according to MSPCA-Angell.

The horses were brought to Nevin’s Farm in Methuen earlier this week via five trailers.

“This is the largest single surrender of horses in at least the last five years,” MSPCA-Angell said.

The horses’ arrival also prompted “one of the fastest repositioning of large animals in Nevin’s Farm history,” which MSCPA-Angell said included finding homes for 10 other resident horses in record time.

Nearly all of the horses are sick with contagious respiratory illnesses that require strict quarantine, according to MSPCA-Angell.

The horses were rescued during a time when MSPCA resources are depleted from caring for thousands of animals over the last year.

“We’re in urgent need of donations at a time of year when the animals need it most,” MSPCA Director Mike Keiley said.

Anyone who wishes to donate to the horses’ care can do so online.