Emaciated pony found collapsed in Old Buckenham field - RSPCA appeals for information

A horse found emaciated and collapsed in a field in Old Buckenham. Picture: RSPCA

A horse found emaciated and collapsed in a field in Old Buckenham. Picture: RSPCA - Credit: Archant

Animal welfare officers are appealing for information after an emaciated horse was found collapsed in a field in Old Buckenham.

The mare, thought to be about four years old, was found just off a public footpath in Doe Lane at about 8.30pm on Thursday, December 3.

She was tethered in an enclosed field with two other horses, but had become so weak she collapsed.

Redwings Horse Sanctuary field officer Julie Harding and welfare veterinary surgeon Nicola Berryman were called to the scene and found the mare on the ground 'dying before their eyes', an RSPCA spokesperson said.

Mrs Berryman said: 'Julie and I attended the mare following a call to our welfare line about a horse that was struggling to stand. When arriving at the site, the mare, who we believe to be four years old, was down and with her tether trapped beneath her leg - she was very emaciated and therefore didn't have the strength to free herself.

'Distressingly, her lengthy struggle to stand was evident from the deep trenches she's dug into the ground with her hooves and she must have been down for several hours.'

Officers decided the kindest thing was to put the horse to sleep.

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Mrs Harding said: 'I dread to think what further suffering this mare would have endured if we hadn't found her. Left to continue her struggle in the cold and dark, she wouldn't have made it through the night so at least we could give her a peaceful passing.'

Laura Sayer, RSPCA inspector, said the charity was seeing an increase in the number of neglected horses.

'Unfortunately we are seeing more and more heartbreaking incidents involving neglected horses like this and it is extremely distressing for anyone to see,' she said.

She urged people who had any information that may lead to identifying the horses owner to contact the RSPCA on 0300 123 8018.