Nine-year-old Juliette Brown from the Fort Worth area, situated near Dallas in Texas USA, died on Saturday night after her horse bolted, causing her to fall and be dragged for over a mile.
Juliette was riding with her father, an experienced horseman, near Lake Benbrook about 10 miles south of Fort Worth, when she opened a can of fizzy drink.
The noise of the can opening, alongside some of the drink spilling over, spooked the horse.
The horse bolted, Juliette fell and was dragged, causing a severe head injury. She was taken by air-ambulance to Cook Children’s Medical Centre where she later died.
The father and daughter were riding out from Benbrook Stables. Owner Molly Thompson told the Dallas Morning News: “This is a little girl who was riding with her father, who is completely devastated.
“It’s just horrible for everyone. These are all experienced horse people.”
A memorial fund will be set up in Benbrook, with donations welcomed to help the family pay for funeral costs.
Police continue to investigate the incident, but it has not been disclosed whether Juliette was wearing a hat.