By Graham West
With the cost of keeping horses going up, a spate of horses being dumped across Kent and Shepway has been reported. Horses and ponies are being found abandoned at locations around the county, with many often found already dead. In some cases they are left on private land, in others they are being fly-grazed on council land without permission. It is a problem that equine welfare charities have been dealing with for a number of years, with the situation worsening during the recession.
A coloured cob has been found dead on the side of the road near Aldington a few weeks ago.
The piebald, thought to be a youngster of around three or four years old, was found with a ruptured stomach. Local horse owner Tina Bowmer, was called by a concerned neighbour for assistance following the discovery. She told The Looker: “I thought it was going to be a badger or something, I was totally shocked when I saw it was a horse,” she said. “He wasn’t thin, he had a good body condition, but his stomach was like that, he probably had some sort of rupture.”
The RSPCA and police were called, but were not able to remove the body, so Tina and her daughter Lauren arranged for the pony to be cremated. “It really was so sad, but we felt like we couldn’t just leave him there, I couldn’t sleep that Friday night thinking of that poor thing in the field on his own. It was a mystery what had happened to the pony. He was checked for a microchip by her vet, but found to not have one. The vet believed his cause of death was colic.” added Tina. The pony was removed and cremated the following day
A spokesman for the RPSCA confirmed it was contacted about the pony. “An inspector went out to find the body, but with no evidence of wrongdoing or CCTV in the area all she could do at that stage was to advise calling DEFRA so removal of the body could be arranged. Our inspectors have to prioritise their time for animals that are suffering and in need of rescue.”
Two years ago a number of horses were left abandoned near Lydd and several horses were left by the roadside near Brookland.
If you see anyone dumping any animal, please contact your local police and the RSPCA. If you are having problems with re-homing your animal please contact the RSPCA details can be found on their website at www.rspca.org.uk.
Warning that more and more horses are being dumped by owners across Shepway
By Graham West