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Concern grows over “Halloween” attacks

Animal Welfare groups are warning owners to be vigilant in the run up to Halloween following a spate of attacks on horses believed to be linked to witchcraft

Leading animal welfare groups are warning horse owners to be on their guard following a spate of ritual type attacks on horses in the run up to Halloween.

During the months between Easter and Halloween, there have been a number of attacks on horses that appear to coincide with important dates in the “black magic” calendar.

Links to pagans denied

However, according to a story on BBC Online, Doreen Graham of the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, told BBC Scotland that she had made a “faux pas” by describing the link to a pagan calendar.

“That was an error on my part and I would like them to accept my unreserved apology,” she said. “What we are talking about is people involved in the dark side.

The pagan community has been very supportive. They are very at one with nature and they are actually trying to help with our investigation.”

Earlier this month in Aberdeen, Scotland, two horses had their tails cut off just below the dock. Mark Lumgair, a senior inspector with the SSPCA said there had been a number of attacks on horses in the Angus area within the past six months.

The SSPCA, RSPCA and National Equine Welfare Council (NEWC) are all asking owners to look out for any signs that their horses have been tampered with. This might range from manes and tails being cut, to more serious issues, such as evidence of bloodletting, sexual assaults.

James Cretney, chairman of the NEWC said: “We urge people to be vigilant and report anything suspicious, but not to over -sensationalise it.”

Any owner who is worried that their horse may have been the victim of an attack should contact either the RSPCA or the SSPCA so they can collate all the information .

To contact the RSPCA (tel: 0870 5555999) and click here to visit their website, to contact the SSPCA (tel: 0870 7377722) or click here to visit their website.

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