A horse owner has spoken of her devastation after her mare was put down following what is believed to be a “deliberate attack”.
Vets were called to the owner’s home in the Callington area of Cornwall on Saturday morning after the nine-year-old mare was found lying in the field with a very deep wound to the back of her front left leg above the hoof.
“We’re absolutely gutted and still in shock,” said the mare’s owner who preferred not to be named because of the fear of copycat attacks.
“My 16-year-old daughter found her and it broke her heart.
“She is part of the family. The mare was clearly in agony and distress so we called the vets immediately. After examining it, they informed us that the injury was caused by a very hard and sharp implement which was propelled with a significant amount of force.”
She added: “There is nothing in the field that could have done that. The wound was so bad it was beyond repair so we had to have her destroyed. We’re asking for anyone that might have some information to please come forward and talk to the police.”
The incident occurred some time between 7pm on Friday, September 21, and 10.15am the next day. Devon & Cornwall Police have launched a criminal investigation.
Sgt Julian Collison, who is dealing with the case, stated: “The vet is pretty sure it was a deliberate act and so we are appealing to anyone with information, however big or small, to give us a call.”
He added: “It is a bit of a worrying trend in the area. We had an incident two weeks ago where a horse had a chunk cut out of its mane. We’re not linking the incidents but it is concerning that it has happened. We suggest horse owners visit their animals as regularly as possible.”
Horsewatch forcewide co-ordinator Gina Dale was keen to stress that horse owners should not panic.
“This is a horrible thing to have happened and I feel very sad for the horse and her owner but what is important at this time is to keep a sense of proportion. We need to wait for the police to gather all the facts first.”
She added: “In the meantime we need to be even more vigilant. Our advice is to visit your horse as often as you can and if at work try and get a friend to help.
“Also, where possible, change your routine when you visit the stables and field.”
Contact police by calling 101, quoting BN/12/627, or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.