The number of horses taken in by the RSPCA has doubled in the past year, says the charity.
Now it has launched the Stable Future emergency appeal, calling for knowledgeable horse owners to foster the hundreds of young horses in its care.
The RSPCA is caring for 594 ponies and horses that have suffered neglect and cruelty and 270 of them are youngsters. â€¨â€¨
Sally Learoyd, the RSPCA’s equine rehoming officer, said: “Over the past year we’ve seen a huge increase in the number of horses being disowned or allowed to get into an appalling state because the trade in horses has collapsed. â€¨
“I’ve heard of young horses being sold for £5. I’ve heard of horses being bought and sold in pubs and we’ve come across a case of someone keeping a horse on a tower block balcony and feeding it on kitchen scraps. â€¨
“A never-ending tide of young horses are coming into our centres. Fostering our youngsters is a way that horse lovers can help us with this problem.”â€¨
The youngsters available for fostering are aged between one and three and are all happy, healthy and handleable.
They are microchipped, will have passports and be vaccinated against tetanus. â€¨â€¨
Foster carers must have experience of handling horses, enough grazing and be able to take on a youngster for a minimum of six months.
To apply log onto www.rspca.org.uk/stablefuture or call 0300 123 8000 for an application form. â€¨â€¨
Animal lovers who can’t take on a foster horse can also help by donating spare tack, rugs and equipment to the RSPCA or making a donation to our equine centres.