I’ve heard that in the Wild West, they hanged horse thieves. I’ve never heard what they did to criminals who stole only part of the horse, but we might find out what happens to such miscreants in the modern west, if the culprits stealing horse tails in Colorado are ever caught. At least two equestrian centers in the Denver area have been targeted by thieves who come in the night and cut the tails off of horses boarded there. Denver’s KDVR said the Ken Caryl Equestrian Center was aware of the thefts and has set up security cameras and regular patrols, but with no luck yet. The center told the outlet that it would beefing up security and working with other local equestrian centers to protect their horses’ tails. “We actually patrol all of Ken Caryl, including the Equestrian Center,” Ken Caryl Ranch Master Association spokesperson Allison Hefner said. “It is about 10 miles, including our open space.” Eight tails had been stolen last week from the Ken Caryl facility alone, horse owner and competitive hunter/jumper Megan Morrison told KDVR. She said that she was “shocked” last week to visit her horse Eleanor and discover that someone had cut off a large portion of her tail. “We all want a nice full, long tail, especially with a hunter jumper discipline that I do,” Morrison told the outlet. But a horse’s tail is important for much more than just looking good for the competition judges. “Horses, they communicate by their behaviors, and mostly their ears and their tails, and you’re taking that away from them,” she added. “So it just hurts you to the core knowing that’s happening to someone, something that you love and you’ve invested a lot of time and money into.” The station noted that it had found numerous similar complaints online, including another Denver-area equestrian center that had seen five horse tails stolen over three days. According to Morrison, local horse owners were well aware of the problem. “People use them for crafts or jewelry,” Morrison said. “They’ll use them to make violin bows.” Watch KDVR’s coverage here: The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office told KDVR that it was investigating the thefts and that the culprits could be charged with “tampering and mischief charges.” Anyone in the area experiencing such a theft is encouraged to report it to the authorities. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.