A £1,000 donation by members of the North West and Wales Shire Foal Society will aid new research into common illnesses affecting Shire horses.

The money will enable the University of Liverpool’s Leahurst Equine Hospital to conduct a health survey with owners. This will provide evidence-based information on the prevalence of certain conditions among Shires.

It will also highlight areas that owners want veterinary researchers to focus on in the future, to maximise the health and welfare of the breed.

Jean Pleavin Edge, of the North West and Wales Shire Foal Society, said: “We are delighted to be able to donate this money to the Leahurst Equine Hospital and even more thrilled that it will be put towards researching common conditions such as sweet itch, an allergy that causes misery to Shire horses and their owners each year.”

Members of the society presented the cheque to staff at the hospital during a short presentation last month (July 17).

Dr Debbie Archer from Leahurst Equine hospital said: “Our speciality is in research, so donations like this make it possible to use our expertise to help benefit equine health wherever we can.”

For more information please visit www.shire-horse.org.uk