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A Suffolk man has been jailed after an 18-month old piebald colt was in such a bad condition he was put to sleep.

The horse was emaciated and infested with worms. He had been been left collapsed on the ground for a week.

Quentin Ship, 72, of Hall Lane in Yaxley, was handed a 23-week prison sentence by Ipswich Magistrates Court last week. He was also given a life ban on keeping all animals.

The court heard that Mr Ship had left the colt, called Whiskey, lying out in the open for three days at the beginning of February 2013, before dragging him into an open shelter a few yards from his kitchen window.

RSPCA inspector, Nicola Thorne, said she had received a call from a member of the public who had seen Whiskey lying in the field and was concerned that he had been taken out of sight.

Inspector Thorne then arrived at the property and immediately called a vet, and it was decided that Whiskey’s suffering had been so severe, they had no option but to put him to sleep.

Inspector Thorne said: “The most disturbing aspect of this case is that Mr Ship could see this poor animal every day from the house and never thought to call a vet.

“He was already banned for life from keeping livestock.”

Mr Ship pleaded guilty to one charge of causing unnecessary suffering and two of failing to address the cause of Whiskey’s weight loss and poor body condition, and of failing to provide adequate treatment for his worm infection.

The judge stated that the degree of suffering caused to the pony, in addition to Ship’s previous history of maltreating animals, meant he would be disqualified from owning any animals for life.