Pony put down to end ‘appalling neglect’

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A SEVERELY neglected pony left wandering lanes near Kirkcaldy has been put down.

Now SPPCA officers are appealing for help to identify those repsonsible for the appalling ill-treatment.

They discovered the small Shetland pony down a lane near fields outside Thornton.

It had severely overgrown hooves which caused ‘‘horrific’’ pain and suffering, and the decision was taken to put it down.

Steven Gray, senior inspector, said: “This pony was caused a great deal of pain and suffering over a long period of time.

“The information we have is it was found wandering along a lane by Balbeggie Avenue near Thornton around two weeks ago, and was taken in by someone locally.

“We are keen to trace the person responsible for this neglect and urge anyone with information to come forward.

‘‘Someone may know who owned this pony or may even have simply seen it being kept in a nearby field or paddock recently.

Distress

“The pony had developed a severe deformity due to a lack of treatment and care.

‘‘‘This made the possibility of a full recovery extremely unlikely so the decision was taken to end its suffering and alleviate any further distress.”

Veterinary surgeon Hugh Somerville of Loch Leven Equine Practice, who treated the pony, said: “Overgrown hooves happen when they are not trimmed often enough. ‘This pony had a condition called laminitis, which is when the hooves curl up. In human terms, it’s a bit like smashing your thumb with a hammer, then doing press ups on it, putting all of your body weight through the nails.

‘‘This was a horrific case and easily prevented by making sure the horse saw a farrier every six to eight weeks.”