Vets have rescued 21 ponies from a farm after council officers raised concerns about their welfare.
The animals, from Caerphilly, are said to be in poor health and are now receiving medical treatment.
Fifteen of them have been sent to Redwings Horse Sanctuary in Norfolk while six have gone to the Bristol charity Horseworld.
Redwings said it is optimistic the ponies, many of which are mares and foals, will make a full recovery.
The owner agreed to sign the animals over to the charities' care after an inspection by vets.
Redwings head of welfare and senior vet Nicolas de Brauwere said: "Many of the ponies were in very poor condition and in order to act in their best interest it was crucial that we took action as soon as possible to remove them.
"We were able to intervene using the animal welfare legislation to get the ponies signed over into our care.
"I am delighted to say that they are gathering strength already and we are optimistic that they will make a full recovery."
Many of the animals are said to be very nervous and will need significant rehabilitation work over the coming months.
The rescue saw 10 staff from Redwings join forces with Caerphilly council and Horseworld representatives.
Three of the ponies now at Horseworld will be taken in by The Blue Cross in Rolleston at a later date.
Coun Rob Gough of Caerphilly council said: "This was an excellent example of a local authority working with animal welfare organisations to protect animals in need.
"The operation was a major success and I'd like to thank all concerned for their efforts.
"These horses are now receiving expert care to get them back to health."