Sad plight of abandoned ponies

The ISPCA in Donegal was called out twice recently to rescue horses that had been abandoned. Sadly, in one of the cases, the animal’s injuries were such that it had to be put down.

The ISPCA in Donegal was called out twice recently to rescue horses that had been abandoned. Sadly, in one of the cases, the animal’s injuries were such that it had to be put down.

The first emergency call was to the aid of a 15-year-old skewbald miniature Shetland in Letterkenny. The little gelding, named Thor by care staff, was reportedly straying in the vicinity for approximately 10 days before his removal.

ISPCA Inspector Kevin McGinley, who coordinated Thor’s rescue, commented: “I am glad to have removed this pony from that situation and any potential harm. It is not the responsibility of the ISPCA to impound healthy stray animals but thankfully, in this case, we were able to come to Thor’s aid.”

Thor was taken to the National Animal Centre in Keenagh, Co. Longford where he is doing well. Nobody has come forward to claim him so he will be made available for rehoming.

Thor will require an experienced home where he can be a companion to another pony. For further information about rehoming Thor, please visit the ISPCA equine rehoming section on http://www.ispca.ie/rehoming/horses_rehoming, email info@ispca.ie or call 043 33 25035.

Just days later, ISPCA Inspector McGinley responded to reports that three horses were straying in forestry outside Raphoe. One of them, a two year old skewbald filly, was injured and in need of assistance.

Inspector McGinley managed to isolate and catch the filly, named Rhona by rescuers. An initial veterinary assessment suggested that Rhona had a fractured lower jaw which it was thought was most likely caused by a kick from another horse. She was also thin and had rain scald.

The filly was taken to the National Animal Centre in Keenagh but was not eating well and was not thriving. Further veterinary examinations revealed that the unfortunate animal had a second fracture in her top jaw and a hole in the roof of her mouth. This was allowing food to enter her sinus cavity and was causing infection.

Unfortunately, the damage was too severe to be rectified and Rhona was suffering. The difficult decision was therefore taken on veterinary advice to have her humanely euthanized. It was a sad end for a horse with a lovely temperament.

Inspector McGinley said: “It is a real pity that there wasn’t a more positive outcome for Rhona but we can take some comfort from the fact that her suffering was ended.”

If you think an animal is in danger, neglected or being abused, please contact the ISPCA National Animal Cruelty Helpline on 1890 515 515 in full confidence and help the ISPCA prevent abused to all animals. Visit www.ispca.ie for further information.