A neglected horse who kicked his way out of his locked stable in distress and collapsed a few feet away had to be put down to end his suffering.
The RSPCA was called to an allotment in Moseley Road, Burnley, on 12 December 2017, to reports of a collapsed horse.
“What we found when we got there was shocking,” said RSPCA inspector Lynsey Taylor.
“The collapsed horse we’d been called about, Domino was laid at the entrance to the allotment, a few feet away from his stable which had been bolted shut top and bottom but Domino had kicked the lower stable door open in his distress.
“Very sadly, there was nothing vets could do for him but end his suffering and he was put to sleep at the scene.”
Ms Taylor said a second horse, a colt called Koda, was also down, but inspectors helped him to his feet and he was taken into the care of the Horses and Ponies Protection Association (HAPPA), staff from which had also been called to the scene.
“There were a number of horses at the allotments living in awful conditions,” she added. “They were underweight, had overgrown feet, lameness, lice and mites to different degrees.
“A dog, Cyprus, who had recently had puppies was also living in disgusting conditions and, along with the horses, was taken into possession by police on veterinary advice. She was underweight and suffering from mastitis and diarrhoea.”
Cyprus and another horse, Gypsy Boy, were signed over into the RSPCA’s care, while Koda was signed over to HAPPA.
On 5 April 2018, the RSPCA attended the allotment again after concerns were raised about a colt there. Deano, who was in poor body condition, was placed into the RSPCA’s care.
Three people, who pleaded guilty to offences under the Animal Welfare Act, appeared at Burnley Magistrates’ Court for sentencing on 17 January.
Jade English, 29, of Manchester Road, Burnley and Rebecca Wilkin, 41, Burnley Road, Crawshawbooth, Rossendale, pleaded guilty to five offences relating to horses and a dog.
Carl Jason Watson, 46, of Cog Lane, Burnley, pleaded guilty to one offence relating to a horse (Deano).
In mitigation, the court heard it was not deliberate cruelty, the horses were rescued from elsewhere and the defendants did their best but did not have the money to feed or house them properly. The court also heard Watson had not had Deano very long.
Ms Taylor said: “These animals were failed by these people and they suffered — and in Domino’s case died — as a result.”
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English was sentenced to a six-month community order, with a 9pm to 6am curfew for eight weeks and 10 rehabilitation activity days. She was banned from keeping equines for four years and a deprivation order was placed on three horses not previously signed over to the RSPCA. She was ordered to pay £1,200 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.
Wilkins was sentenced to a 12-month community order including 20 rehabilitation activity days. She was banned from keeping equines for four years, and ordered to pay £1,200 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.
Watson was sentenced to a community order with a 9pm to 6am curfew for nine weeks. He was banned from keeping equines for two years and a deprivation order was placed on Deano. He was also ordered to pay £600 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.
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