A woman appealing against her conviction for letting a horse starve to death spent $30,000 on vet bills for her animals in the five years before it died, her lawyer says.
Anne Power was found guilty of recklessly ill-treating the horse, named Pip, by letting him slowly starve to death.
Ms Power has taken her case to the High Court, where lawyer Dan Gardiner said it defied commonsense a person would spend that much on vets and still be reckless or deliberately blind to the care of her horse.
The North Shore District Court found her guilty in April, saying Pip would have been in severe pain for months before he died.
Ms Power was ordered her to give up all her animals and prohibited from owning any for 10 years.
The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) said she had at least 40 dogs, 20 parrots, up to 50 chickens, at least 20 horses and sheep, at least four llamas and six cats.
The appeal is continuing, before Justice Andrews.