One horse has died and another is being treated by vets after being injected with gasoline in a field in Florida.

The 2 horses belonged to neighbours, John Hoogerhyde and Leah Greenleaf, and shared a field in Marion County.

A blood spot was discovered on the shoulder of the horse belonging to John Hoogerhyde on 2 June. This led to an unusual bump, which grew in size before the horse became lethargic and eventually had to be put down.

Following a necropsy, the horse was found to have significant amounts of the petroleum liquid in its system.

Mr Hoogerhyde told the local news station West Palm Beach TV: “[The vet who performed the necropsy] said it smelled like someone had poured a five-gallon can of gasoline on her.”

Two days later a similarly unusual wound was discovered on the neck of the mare’s field companion. A subsequent veterinary examination revealed that this horse, too, had been injected with gasoline.

The second horse’s owner, Leah Greenleaf, told Fox News: “When they did actually open up, the surgeons even smelled the gas, and that’s what confirmed it for them. The only way you get the smell of gas inside of a horse is if someone put it there.”

Valerie Strong of the Marion County Sheriff’s office said that neither syringes nor other suspicious objects were found at the scene, adding: “The horses’ owners have no known enemies.”

A $1,000 reward is being for information leading to an arrest.

NB: Stock picture