MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -

A member of a Minnesota horse industry group has been charged with felony animal cruelty in the treatment of her horses.

The Star Tribune reports that Carol Dobbelaire, 63, of Buffalo, was suspended by the Minnesota Horse Council, an umbrella group that represents different parts of Minnesota's equine industry.

Her husband Rick was also charged.

Court documents allege that some of the couple's 16 horses were so hungry they had begun eating away at the walls of their barn. Two were so emaciated they had to be killed.

Carol Dobbelaire said the couple has operated a refuge for neglected horses for years, and has often had thin horses they have been unable to fatten up. She said she would fight the charges.