A dying pony dumped on a footpath was not strong enough to survive – but was at least “surrounded by love” during his last hours.
A dog-walker found the coloured youngster on land off Ringlestone Road, Maidstone, Kent, on the morning of 4 February. He called police, who called the RSPCA.
The charity attended with a vet, who gave the pony painkillers in an attempt to get him on his feet.
“He had collapsed, was unable to stand and did not appear to be able to use his back legs,” an RSPCA spokesman said.
“Rescuers worked to get the pony on to a horsebox and transported him to a nearby vet. Sadly though, despite veterinary treatment, he did not have the strength to recover and the sad decision [to put him down] was made by the independent vet to prevent him suffering further.”
RSPCA Inspector Kirsten Ormerod said it was an “absolutely heartbreaking” sight.
“Everyone at the location was doing all they could to get him back on his feet, but he was just too exhausted and sick to find the strength to fight any more.
“I was willing him to make it, but sadly he just wasn’t strong enough to pull through. All I can think that is at least he spent his last night in a warm stable surrounded by love.”
Ms Ormerod said the pony was not strong enough to have made it to the footpath on his own.
The young mare was found by a road covered in mud, having died in the early stages of labour
Cappuccino was one of more than 100 horses found at a site in 2010, all struggling to survive on very
“We can see evidence of where the gate to the footpath had been forced by some type of vehicle, and we are appealing to anyone who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously in the area during the morning of 4 February or the night before,” she said.
“I would ask that if anyone recognises this pony, knows who the owner is, or saw anything suspicious in the area in the time leading up to him being found, I would urge you to call me on the RSPCA appeal line on 0300 1238018.”
The pony had one blue eye and was wearing a brown headcollar. He was not microchipped.
Would you like to read Horse & Hound’s independent journalism without any adverts? Join Horse & Hound Plus today and you can read all articles on HorseandHound.co.uk completely ad-free