A horse’s life is on the line after he ran into a gate when a low-flying helicopter passed over his field.
Terrified two-year-old BOGOF Pete hit the gate with such force, he bent it in half and suffered a severe facial injury.
Marilyn Stead, who runs a hunt hireling business in Cornwall, owns the youngster.
She told H&H that due to the severity of Pete’s wound, she is unsure if he will survive.
“Pete was in blind panic when he ran into the gate, we’re lucky he didn’t break his neck,” she said.
“His injuries are life-threatening. The perforation on the side of his face goes through to the inside of his mouth and there is bone fragments in the wound.
“Pete is very bright in himself but the problem is his perforated cheek — food comes out of his mouth and into his wound.”
Click here to view the wound — warning very graphic image.
Marilyn was at a point-to-point when the incident took place.
“My neighbour saw it happen and the helicopter was definitely very low — it swept over the trees above our field of youngsters.
“Another one must have come over too as he’s now lame.”
BOGOF Pete was given his unusual name due to his unexpected arrival.
Unknown to Marilyn, when she bought her hunting mare Suzy (pictured below with Pete), she was in foal.
Marilyn described Pete as “a good sort”.
“He was a lovely surprise and the makings of a cracking type for the future,” she said.
Pete is having emergency veterinary treatment and Marilyn is now appealing for information about the helicopter.
She has been tirelessly trying to trace the aircraft as she hopes the pilot can help with Pete’s spiralling vet bills.
“The vets have been amazing but they are not free,” she added.
“I know that no-one would deliberately scare an animal but it does show a level of negligence. What if my daughter was riding at the time?
An air display at Lincolnshire show caused mayhem…
“Low flying aircraft are becoming more and more of a problem. I find it incredulous that private aircraft owners are not obliged to notify the aviation authorities and airports of their movements.”
The helicopter flew over Marilyn’s 200-acre sheep farm near Truro on 14 May between 3 and 3.30pm.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Marilyn by calling 07737382649.