The ISPCA received and responded to more than 180 equine distress calls related to neglected or abused horses, ponies and foals in 2012 in Donegal. This equates to 12% of the national 1,500 calls per year total. Almost 100 of these animals had to be taken into ISPCA care – an increase of over 10% from 2011.
ISPCA expectation for calls this year (2013) relating to equine care nationally is in the region of 1,700.
The figures were released as part of a publicity drive for the ISPCA Hay Drive, which calls for support from the public to help the ISPCA feed, care for and rehome the horses, ponies and foals in their care.
With a difficult wet summer the problem of feeding has become especially difficult this winter as hay is becoming scarce. Many horses, ponies and foals which were able to graze during the summer will be left abandoned and neglected during the winter rather than costing the owner money in feed.
The ISPCA becomes a vital source of care for these animals during the expected colder, harsher months ahead.
This winter, the ISPCA is urgently asking people to donate online or to text HAY to 57802 to donate e3 to help fill the ISPCA hay barn. e3 will buy a bale of hay and feed a neglected horse for a day.
Naturally, rehoming dogs, cats and smaller more domestic animals has a higher success rate while horses, ponies and foals require a certain type of owner. One who has the land, capability to stable in winter and feed during the colder, frosted months. Part of this is because of difficult winters, but too many are because of horrific abuse, starvation and neglect.
“Naturally, we are saddened at the number of these beautiful animals that have to be seized and rescued, but we have no option.” said Noel Griffin, CEO ISPCA.
“We continue to call for proper measures of equine ownership through the national identity tagging campaign, in order to reduce the number of animals requiring our attention and resource drain. Every text or online donation made will go directly to into our equine care programme,” Griffin concluded.
The ISPCA is a non-profit organisation completely reliant on public donations which is pushed to the limits in trying to cope with the number of abused, neglected and abandoned animals.
Campaigns like the Hay Drive help raise essential monies to help deal with the daily realities of animal welfare. The harsh reality is, January to March, the ISPCA have a deluge of horses, ponies and foals who have been left in the cold, on grassless waste land, ignored and dumped.
Please support the ISPCA Hay Drive by donating €3 for a bale of hay. Text the word Hay to 57802 or donate online at www.ISPCA.ie to help.