The RSPCA is trying to trace the owner of an abandoned horse in Devon, who has been put down due to horrific injuries

The RSPCA is appealing for the owner of a horse found with a terrible leg injury to come forward.

RSPCA inspector Kate Smith was called to a field on farmland near Combe Martin in Devon last week and found the 14.2hh bay gelding suffering from a severe injury to the left hind leg.

The bone and tendons in the horse’s leg were exposed and severely infected with flies and maggots.

The leg was judged to be untreatable by a vet and the pony was put down to end any further suffering.

Inspector Smith said: “I’m absolutely disgusted that someone could leave a horse with an injury like this.

“If it had remained untreated, the horse would have died a slow painful death. Any responsible owner would have noticed this the day it happened and sought immediateveterinary help. The pain he went through must have been unimaginable.

“We urgently need to trace the owner of this horse, and would like to hear from anyone with any information. The farm owners say it had been there around three weeks, but have no idea where it came from.”

Apart from his injury, the gelding was in good condition, but was very nervous and difficult to handle. He was wearing a headcollar attached to a rope, and the rope plus a long piece of wire had become entangled in his tail.

Anyone with any information about this horse should call the RSPCA (tel:0870 5555999). All calls will be treated in strictest confidence

Read more equine welfare cases: