‘Hours from death’: remarkable recovery of pony found collapsed in filthy shed

  • A pony who was found “hours from death” collapsed in a cow shed has made a remarkable recovery to become a “picture of health”.

    Carl, named by the RSPCA’s vet team after inspector Carl Larsson who found him, was discovered on a farm in Lancashire last summer.

    The charity had been called to investigate concerns about dogs at the property and while Mr Larsson was assessing conditions at the farm, he stumbled across a cattle barn and found the young pony collapsed in filthy straw.

    RSPCA Carl before

    Carl, pictured the day he was found.

    He called the vet team and the pony’s life was saved. The person responsible for Carl at the time of his neglect has not been traced.

    “When Carl arrived with us, he was a shadow of the pony he is today,” said Emma Tallentire, equine deputy manager at RSPCA Felledge Equine Centre in Co. Durham.

    “He’d been through such a lot before he was rescued. He was found collapsed, cold, lethargic and in poor condition — the inspector said he was likely just hours from death — so understandably, he wasn’t very trusting of people.

    “We worked to build up Carl’s trust slowly, and allocated one groom in particular to work with him to have lots of one-to-one time. Over the following few months he grew in confidence, and now he’ll happily have his feet picked out and he enjoys being groomed.

    “He’s come a long way and we’re really proud of him, he’s very sociable in the field and enjoys playing with his pony friends.”

    Carl has made such a good recovery that he is now available for rehoming.

    “Carl is coming up to two years old and standing at approximately 12hh, and still growing,” added Ms Tallentire.

    “He is a sweet pony and easy to look after, although it’s important that potential adopters know he can still be a little spooky and headshy, so we are looking for a knowledgeable person who is competent with young inexperienced horses so they can continue his education and basic handling.”

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