In 2017 our Field Officer was called out to see three horses living in inappropriate conditions with limited access to water or food. One horse was tethered, under-weight and with feet in need of attention. After locating an owner, the Field Officer discovered that the under-weight equine was under veterinary care and so our charity worked with the owner to improve the condition of this horse and the other two equines.
We supported the owner for months with a feeding plan and regular visits of support which happily resulted in all three equines’ welfare improving. The owner had engaged and completed all requested improvements and there were no longer any welfare concerns. One of the mares in the herd had also foaled a beautiful colt, and all was well. Our team was naturally happy with the positive outcome. Our charity teams then continued to monitor this herd over the next few months and satisfied with the owner’s new ways of working, the case was closed and no further concerns were raised by the public.
Sadly, the story doesn’t end there. A year later we were made aware of a collapsed equine. On arrival it quickly became apparent that this was the same herd of equines from the year before. The owner had moved them to new surroundings and the level of care for the equines had seriously diminished. The youngster was in serious need of veterinary intervention. The RSPCA came to support us with a vet.
The vet deemed that the horse was suffering and so the Police Constable on the scene took the equine into possession under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. The horse was immediately transported to our intensive care unit in Bransby and given the name Peter, after our founder Peter Hunt, as it was the anniversary of his death. Peter received round the clock care whilst the staff and vets at Bransby Horses fought tirelessly to save him.
Unfortunately, due to pneumonia, combined with a high worm burden and severe lice infestation, Peter lost his fight to live. Peter was only with us for one week but touched the hearts of everyone who met him and he’ll never be forgotten. An RSPCA investigation commenced to get the justice that Peter deserved and was able to deliver a successful outcome at court. The owner pleaded guilty to failing to investigate and address the cause of a poor body condition and weight loss.
They were given a community order and ordered to pay costs. They were also disqualified from owning or keeping horses for 10 years and ordered to sign over any remaining equines into the care of Bransby Horses. We welcomed to Bransby Horses, Peter’s mum, named Dora by our staff, along with newly named Diego and Alicia. Finally, they were safe and would receive the love and care they deserved. Diego and Alicia were underweight when they came to us, but Dora was getting rounder by the day. It was soon apparent she was in foal! In 2019 we welcomed beautiful Boots into our world. She captured our hearts the second we saw her. Peter never got to live the life that Boots will, but he will live forever in her legacy and our hearts.