A suspicious incident in which blood is suspected to have been taken from a horse in Scotland has been reported to police.

Owner Sarah Aitken became concerned when she found a grey cap thought to be from a blood withdrawal needle and spots of blood on the floor next to a stable on the morning of 14 July.

“On closer inspection my horse also had three small swellings grouped together in the jugular groove halfway down his neck and some dried blood at the site of needle entry,” she said.

“Apart from this my horse appears unharmed and neither of them appears stressed.”

She added that she has spoken to vets, but the motive is unknown.

“He is a gelding and therefore it cannot be for breeding, he is not valuable — only to me — albeit he is a 17.2hh eye-catching Hanoverian,” said Sarah.

“A couple of possible motives are: a “clean” blood sample has been required, but there are flaws to this theory, such as why use my horse and not another more accessible horse, and why take the risk that my horse is not on medication,” she said.

“[Or] they are testing my horse’s reaction to needles prior to sedation, prior to potentially stealing him that evening or in the future.”

Article continues below…


You might also be interested in:


Two nights previously (12 July), the owner was woken up in the early hours by a stationary vehicle with its engine running outside her house and yard in the Perth and Kinross area of Scotland.

CCTV also caught a vehicle on camera just before 1am on 18 July.

Sarah has increased her security and has called on others to do the same. She has also reported these incidents to Police Scotland.

“Let alone how violated I feel, my horse is 15 years old and I have owned him since he was two,” she said.

“Despite his size he is a gentle giant, kind, loving and extremely trusting of people.”

A spokesman for the force told H&H they are making enquiries and urged anyone with information to call 101.

For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday