Three ponies endured long-term neglect

Three ponies endured long-term neglect after their owner failed to care for them adequately. 

Bones visible

Stables in poor condition © RSPCA

The female owner seldom visited and had not been seen for several months. The grass in the horses’ field was very sparse and there was no natural water supply, so unless locals filled buckets for the ponies they had to rely on rainwater.

Bay mares Lottie and Silkie and a Cremello mare, called Polo, were all found with dull coats, suffering from irritation from lice infestations. Lottie and Silkie were in very poor condition – their spines, ribs and pelvic bones were clearly visible and they seemed lethargic and depressed.

Lottie’s front teeth were very worn down, likely to be from attempting to chew on the wood of trees and fences. Her hooves were overgrown.

Vet called

RSPCA Inspector Mike Pugh attended with a police officer and a veterinary surgeon was called, who gave the horses a full examination. She concluded that Lottie and Polo had been subjected to unnecessary suffering from a failure to provide them with a nutritionally-balanced diet suitable for their needs. Silkie was also considered to be suffering as a result of malnutrition. The animals were taken into possession and removed to a place of safety.

‘Lack of funds’  

Horse Silkie neglected state by stable © RSPCA

The owner accepted that the condition of her animals was far from satisfactory. The reasons she gave for not attending regularly included lack of funds, not feeling well and having other matters to deal with. She had also failed to ensure that anyone else visited the horses to ensure their welfare.

She refused to give up ownership of the ponies, showed no remorse and did not appear to acknowledge her responsibility for the deterioration in her ponies’ condition.

The three ponies have since been rehomed. 



Investigating officer: RSPCA Inspector Mike Pugh
Defendant: Female 58, unemployed
Offences: Animal Welfare Act 2006 s4 and s9
Plea: Guilty
Total number of convictions: Five
Sentence: Disqualified from keeping animals for life excluding her two cats and parrot; £500 costs.
Prosecuted by: Tudur Owen, Roberts, Glynne & Co Solicitors


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