The owners of two horses found dead and rotting in their stable have been banned from keeping equines for life and given suspended prison sentences.

Julia Nall, 47, and her 22-year-old daughter Rachel Nall, both of New Street, Measham, were both sentenced at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court on 4 May. The pair had previously pleaded guilty to animal welfare offences.

The RSPCA was called after the horses’ bodies were found in a stable in Valley Road, Overseal.

Inspector Laura Bryant said: “I had never seen a horse in such a bad way. One of the horses was so decomposed and rotting, we could not establish how he had died.

“The other horse, Storm, had died more recently and we were able to establish through a post-mortem examination that he had died as a result of emaciation.

“He was in such a bad way before he died. He had untreated laminitis, was lying in his own faeces and his hooves were severely deformed, as they had overgrown by around nine inches. It was terrible to see.

“On top of that, the stable was completely filled with faeces and was not a suitable environment for horses to be kept in.”

Four surviving horses were emaciated; one was also suffering from pneumonia.

Ms Bryant said: “The horses were being fed, but only small amounts of hay; not enough to sustain healthy body weights. As a result, they began to suffer because of the effects of emaciation.

“Horses are expensive animals to look after and it is so important that people realise just how much they can cost. In this case, Julia and Rachel Nall were not able to afford to keep six horses, which resulted in them all suffering.

“Keeping horses is an incredible privilege, but we hope this case highlights how demanding equine care can be.”

Both women were given an 18-week prison sentence, suspended for two years, and fined £500.

The four surviving horses have recovered and been rehomed.

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