The heartbroken owner of a “magnificent” young Clydesdale who had to be put down after he sustained horrific injuries from barbed wire wants others to be aware of the dangers.
Terri Ireland wanted to share what had happened to her beloved four-year-old gelding Vinnie in the hope it might save another horse.
Terri told H&H Vinnie had been out on loan since the summer.
“I told his loaner, he was living his best life with her,” she said. “He had only left me for five months, now he’s gone for ever.”
Terri, who bought Vinnie as a colt when she was 62, had him professionally backed, and was “thrilled to bits” when she was able to ride him.
She made the decision to loan him out partly as she had just lost another horse to bone cancer, and she said he was enjoying a varied life including hacking, fun rides and hound exercise.
Then, last Sunday afternoon, she had a phone call from the yard.
“Someone had gone up to check the cattle, and Vinnie came over on three legs,” she said.
“There was barbed wire in his tail, and embedded in his back leg, and infection had already set in. It’s the stuff of nightmares.”
The vet advised Terri to have Vinnie put down.
“The wire had gone through to the bone, and it had shredded his tendon,” Terri said. “The vet said it was the most horrific injuries he’d seen in 15 years.
“Four and a half years old, his whole life ahead of him; this beautiful, magnificent horse, but I had to make that decision. I can’t get over the needless waste of a young life.”
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Terri said she is struggling to deal with what happened to Vinnie. She believes the wire was loose, rather than part of a fence, and “my horse paid the ultimate price”.
“Some people seem to think barbed wire is the lesser of two evils, and maybe if it’s taut it’s not as dangerous, but if it’s in disrepair, it’s always dangerous,” she said.
“I don’t think I’m ever going to get over the needless loss of a young magnificent horse with his life ahead of him but also hope that no-one else suffers the pain I am going through. In some way, it would help to think another horse could be saved.”
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