Fly-grazing incidents across Wales have plummeted since new legislation was introduced to clamp down on horse owners.

Cases involving straying or abandoned horses have also fallen after the Control of Horses (Wales) Act 2014 gave local authorities the powers to seize, impound and dispose of horses.

A review by consultants Equiventus Ltd found that, by 2016, average seizures had fallen to 18 per month from a monthly figure of 30 in 2014.

This was supported by South Wales Police, which saw an 83% reduction in incidents between 2012 and 2016.

Rural affairs secretary Lesley Griffiths said the Act had been successful in curbing bad behaviour by some horse owners.

“However, while the report is very good news, we should not let our guard down,” she said.

“I am determined to continue to do what’s needed to combat the blight on communities caused by the fly grazing, straying and abandonment of horses and ponies.” ... READ MORE


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A video of a horse being forced to smoke a joint filled with hashish at a traditional wedding caused outrage on Egyptian social media platforms and the country’s parliament.

In the video, which is just over two-minutes long, a man appears to be forcing the horse to smoke the joint through its nose, with one nostril and its mouth being blocked. The man holds the joint in the horses mouth for about two minutes.

The man then attempts to get the horse to dance. The horse starts dancing with its two front hooves on a chair.

The video has stirred controversy and outrage among Egyptians on social media outlets. Some have demanded that the man in the video be put on trial... READ MORE


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The shocking footage shared on social media last year taken during the CSI1* in Wiener Neustadt, Germany showed Bernhard Maier crashing his horse, Paddy's Darco, through most of the fences. He carried on despite loud boos and whistles from the audience, until he was eliminated after two refusals. Such behaviour angered our readers, being read over 85,500 times here on Trot On.

The Austrian Equestrian Association imposed a provisional suspension of three months for participation in all equestrian events, on Maier after this event. It was then reported that he had also mistreated another horse - a disciplinary procedure was started against him. 

The Austrian federation has now imposed a five-year suspension on Maier and a fine of 1,120 euros.

Bernhard Maier has been found guilty of unsporting behavior and unfair treatment and excessive demands on a horse. He was also found guilty of causing damage to the equestrian sport's reputation.

Maier has announced that he will appeal against the decision. He will also face disciplinary proceedings.


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Redwings Horse Sanctuary is gearing up to the mark the 10th anniversary of the notorious Spindles Farm case, which gave rise to one of the biggest equine welfare operations in British history.

Despite their terrible ordeals and extensive veterinary treatment, an incredible 58 Amersham survivors remain in Redwings’ care 10 years on – 46 horses and donkeys are enjoying life at the Sanctuary, while a further 12 have been rehomed to loving guardian homes through its rehoming programme.

Redwings plans a series of activities and events throughout 2018 to recognise the Amersham survivors, including the launch of a new fund to help care for them for the next 10 years.

“Amersham was a momentous rescue that not only left a mark on Redwings, but the wider public too,” Redwings’ chief executive Lynn Cutress said.

“Never before had people’s eyes been so opened to the suffering of equines in this country, while the use of the new powers under the Animal Welfare Act was a real ground-breaking moment for the animal welfare community and has gone on to revolutionise how we save horses in need ever since.

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Redwings Horse Sanctuary have issued a warning about fireworks following the loss of two rescued horses last year.

Vets were called to attend incidents at Piggots farm, south of Norwich on November 5 2016.

In both cases the animals had to be put to sleep having been terrified by a nearby fireworks display.

Nineteen-year-old Welsh pony, Sprite, was found suffering with suspected colic, he was lying down, covered in sweat and breathing heavily.

Similarly, Percy, a 25-year-old Palomino pony was found non-weight-bearing lame on his right front leg and in pain.

Attending Redwings veterinary surgeon, Dawn Trayhorn said: “As a result of loud fireworks being let off nearby, it is possible that Sprite’s Colic was brought on by the stress of him and his group charging around in terror. Percy’s injury may also have been caused when he was running around at high speed.

“Heartbreakingly, despite our best efforts, there was no choice other than to put them to sleep.”

She added: “During my twelve years at Redwings, I have never had to put two ponies to sleep in one evening in the same field as a result of an emergency situation. It was a devastating experience.”... READ MORE
Preparing for fireworks checklist HERE
Remember remember to keep your horse happy on 5th November! Fireworks can be frightening for horses, so Redwings have created a checklist to help keep your horse safe through the festive season.
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A charity which rescues working horses has been evicted from its Sussex base by its one time patron, the Marquess of Abergavenny.

The Working Horse Trust was forced to re-home 11 rare breed shire horses scattering them around the country when its tenancy on the Nevill Estate in Eridge ran out last month.

The Marquess stepped down as the charity's patron five years ago after first serving it with an eviction notice.

Volunteer Jo Ambrose says evicting the horses was heartbreaking

Volunteer with the trust, Jo Ambrose, 59 said it had been a "heartbreaking task" - clearing the site - and watching her "beloved horses" leave what had been their home for the last 23 years.

"Some have gone together to the Hillside Sanctuary in Norfolk. Others have gone to colleagues in the heavy horse world to continue their working lives," she said... READ MORE
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The controversy over Davy Russell’s punch to his mount Kings Dolly before a race at Tramore nearly a fortnight ago continued on Tuesday when David Muir, the RSPCA’s experienced equine consultant, added his voice to widespread criticism of the Irish Turf Club for its failure either to fine or to suspend Russell over the incident.

Russell left a disciplinary hearing on Saturday with nothing more than a caution over the punch, which occurred when Kings Dolly ran freely towards a “show” hurdle and then stopped abruptly, momentarily upsetting Russell’s balance in the saddle. Video footage of the incident has circulated widely on social media, attracting tens of thousands of “views” on Twitter alone. Rather than putting the controversy to bed, the Turf Club’s decision to apply no meaningful sanction to Russell seems to have kept the issue alive. The disciplinary panel had no obvious precedent to draw on when setting a penalty but two cases of horses being struck by riders in Britain in 2012 and 2014, involving Kieren Fallon and Sean Levy, attracted five-day bans and Muir believes a similar case in Britain today would probably incur a stiffer penalty again.

“I was thinking how much things have changed,” Muir, a staunch advocate for horse welfare on racing issues including the Grand National and misuse of the whip, said on Tuesday. “Perception as well as someone’s action is important now and this would make a lot of people unhappy... READ MORE

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One of the 21 ceremonial horses set loose from a military base in Melton has had to be put down as a result of the injuries he suffered.

The animals, of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment, which provide the daily Queen’s Life Guard, bolted, terrified after locks on gates at the Melton base were snapped.

The horses were released from the RAVC Defence Animal Training Regiment, in Asfordby Road, Melton, formerly known as the Defence Animal Centre, at about 11.15pm on Friday, August 4.

Local people helped round up the frightened animals, some of which had run six miles.

Several of the horses were injured after being involved in collisions with cars.

Today the base released a statement saying one of the horses, Paddy, which was still in training, developed complications secondary to the injuries he received on the night and had to be euthanised on Monday.

All the other military horses are said to be making a steady recovery at the base.

The statement said:

“Despite receiving the best veterinary care from MOD and Nottingham University veterinary clinicians, the severe bruising and inflammation in Paddy‘s hind feet developed into irreversible laminitis.

“This condition, which is extremely painful, involves the bond between hoof wall and underlying soft tissues separating and the bone of the foot sinking through the sole of the hoof. 

“Paddy had been receiving 24-hour care since the incident from the Army‘s veterinary and farriery team, but nothing could be done to reverse his condition and it was decided that he should be spared further suffering by putting him to sleep.”

All the horses who galloped along the tarmac roads have suffered from sore feet to varying degrees.

One of the horses also has a deep chest wound and another has a laceration to one of his hind legs.

Both horses, however, are expected to make a full recovery... READ MORE
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Taal Volcano, the second most active volcano in the Philippines, is a popular destination for tourists, most of whom opt to ride up its steep slopes on horses—many of whom are lame, exhausted, and undernourished and go without water despite the grueling climb. These horses had never been treated by a veterinarian for illness or injuries, let alone for routine care, but that all changed for many of them when PETA Asia teamed up with International Veterinary Outreach to improve their lives.

Arriving by canoe across a vast lake formed by the volcano's caldera, volunteer veterinarians accompanied PETA Asia onto the island and provided hundreds of horses with emergency treatment for injuries, vital dental and hoof care, vaccinations, parasite prevention, and more. The vets also conducted an informational seminar that has helped owners improve the horses' welfare. While the lives of these horses will remain hard—and neglect is rampant—meeting their most basic health-care needs has gone a long way to reducing their suffering. 
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Ten horses and ponies found wandrering around a Peterborough housing estate, were rescued after escaping from a field.

The incident was described as "extremely careless and irresponsible" as sadly, it was thought that they had been released deliberately.

Fenland Animal Rescue worked alongside the RSPCA and the police to return the animals back to their paddock.

"I cannot stress enough at how dangerous these situations can be to the public. Under no circumstances should animals be approached whilst roaming free." - Josh Flannigan, Fenland Animal Rescue

"These horses could easily have strayed on to a busy road and been hurt or killed if involved in an accident. This also puts the lives of drivers at risk." - Justin Stubbs, RSPCA Inspector



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