The RSPCA is appealing for more information after a young filly and a gelding were left stranded with one of the horses on the brink of death on May Hill Common earlier this month.
Two RSPCA inspectors attended the picturesque area near Huntley known for its beautiful walks to investigate and found the colourful filly and grey gelding in a pitiful state. Locals confirmed that the pair were not owned and had been dumped at the site.
One of the RSPCA inspectors involved in the rescue, Suzi Smith said: “My heart sank just when I saw the dire condition of the horses but the filly especially.
“The poor girl was filthy and weak and looked like she was on the verge of collapse. She was a bag of bones, her coat was alive with lice and flies were literally crawling all over her, it was horrific.
“I could tell from the state the filly was in that it was going to be a difficult mission to catch her. I was right. She wasn’t used to people or being handled and it was a great struggle to get her into the trailer. She buckled three times whilst we were doing this and I started to fear the worst but she somehow managed to get up in the end.
“Thankfully in this case the future is going to be so much brighter for this pair – they were on the brink of death and had a lucky escape.
“We do not know how they got here or why someone chose to leave them here to die but abandoning any animal in this cruel manner is a serious offence against the Animal Welfare Act. We take incidents like this extremely seriously and those caught and found guilty can face a large fine and up to six months in prison.”
Both horses were immediately taken to a horse sanctuary in Herefordshire for specialist veterinary treatment and some much needed rest and recovery time. They have since been eagerly eating hay and have settled in well to their new temporary home.
Anyone with any further information about these horses or how they may have come to be dumped on May Hill is urged to contact the RSPCA inspector appeal line immediately on 0300 123 8018.
Sadly this pair are just a few of many horses abandoned by their owners each year as the UK reaches breaking point with the devastating equine crisis. In the last three years alone, the RSPCA has received 69,410 calls about horses in England and, of these, 1,900 were about abandonments. The trend shows that as the cost of keeping a horse increases, so do the numbers left to suffer or die.
The RSPCA is at capacity with the numbers of horses in its care and desperately need to find homes for them to free up space to take in more neglected and abused animals. It is also estimated that 4,500 horses are still at risk across England.