A colt found crawling with maggots and barely able to stand just over a year ago has been crowned champion rescue pony at Equifest.

The yearling, since named Buggy, won one of his two classes at the East of England Showground on Saturday (12 August), then went on to win the evening championship.

His win was one of a number of successes for World Horse Welfare as his fellow rescued ponies Charlie, Floss and Hope notched up a win, a second, a fourth, two fifths and a sixth between them.

“We are all absolutely over the moon with Buggy’s championship and proud of what he and the other ponies have achieved at Equifest,” said World Horse Welfare Penny Farm manager Fran Williamson. “Buggy’s story is a shining example of how a pony who has had such a terrible start can leave his past behind and go on to achieve amazing things.”

Buggy needed urgent veterinary care after he was found near Leeds last summer, being “eaten alive” with untreated maggot-infested wounds.

And although he still bears the scars, he “caught the eye” of judges in the PRP/RSPCA rescue pony championship.

RSPCA chief inspector Cathy Hyde who heads up the charity’s equine team said: “I am absolutely delighted little Buggy was crowned the PRP/RSPCA rescue pony of the year, he is a very deserving winner.



“The suffering Buggy endured before he was rescued is unthinkable, but to see him trotting around the prestigious Equifest arena with his sash and ribbons was very moving.

“The RSPCA and World Horse Welfare work very closely on horse rescues and together have tackled some of the country’s worst cases of neglect and suffering. Since our teams rescued Buggy, the team at Penny Farm have done an incredible job rehabilitating him. It’s been very special for us all to see him shine at Equifest.”

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