A foal who was rejected by his mother and found in a muddy ditch has found a “loving loan home” after being nursed back to health by a charity.
Muddy Waters was just three days old when Bristol-based HorseWorld took him in after unsuccessful attempts to reunite him with his mother in April last year.
A passerby called the RSPCA, who arrived promptly, after spotting the foal in a ditch and unable to climb out.
It is believed he had been in the ditch for around 12 hours and was cold, wet and muddy. His mother rejected him despite numerous attempts to reunite them.
“We were called to attend the foal as it appeared that he would need to be hand-reared due to being rejected by his mother,” said HorseWorld’s Jerry Watkins. “He had been in the ditch a long time and when he emerged, he would have smelt very different to her as he had been covered dirty ditch water.”
HorseWorld took him in and staff bottle-fed him hourly until a surrogate mother was found.
“After some phoning around, a suitable mare was found whose foal was stolen at less than 24 hours old only two days before,” added Mr Watkins.
“After the traumatic loss of her foal, she was only too willing to accept her new baby and become the foal’s new mother.”
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Now a yearling, Muddy is doing well and has found a temporary loan home where he will receive some one-to-one handling and attention. He will return to HorseWorld once he is old enough to begin his training.
“We have quite a few youngsters in need of temporary homes with people who have experience with young horses and can offer the calm, consistent handling they need,“ Amy Williams from the charity told H&H.