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Ponies left to suffer with severely overgrown hooves

ISPCA Inspector Lisa O ‘Donovan responded to a call yesterday, 5th November 2015 regarding ponies with extremely overgrown hooves in the Dunmanway region of County Cork.

On arrival at the field, there were two mares visible, both with very long hooves. The grey mare in particular had hooves that were so long they were curling up towards her legs. Whilst she was still mobile, she was clearly in great discomfort when moving.

ISPCA Inspector Lisa O’Donovan said, “This is a horrendous form of cruelty. There are months and months of growth on these hooves and these poor ponies have endured a lot of suffering. There is no excusing the condition of these animals.”

Both ponies were seized under the Animal Health and Welfare Act and removed to ISPCA Equine Rescue Centre in Mallow, Co. Cork, where they were given immediate treatment to make them more comfortable.

Inspector O’Donovan added, “This will be a very slow process, and the hooves will need continuous farrier work over a period of time. It is not possibly to trim them back in one session as this could cause serious damage to the ponies’ tendons. However we are very relieved to be able to help these two young ladies along, and are hopeful that they will make a full recovery in time.”

Neither of the ponies were microchipped, so an owner has yet to be identified. The investigation is on-going.

Hoof care is a vital part of equine care, and common hoof problems can be avoided by picking out hooves regularly, gently cleaning the frog and scraping off any remaining matter from the soles. Regular trimming by a qualified farrier every six to eight weeks can help identify and correct any hoof problems your equine may encounter, and prevent serious issues like those encountered by Inspector O’Donovan.

As a charitable organisation, the ISPCA relies on public support enabling us to carry out our vital work rescuing, rehabilitating and responsibly rehoming animals that desperately need our help.  If you can support our work by making a donation. Join Our Fight and together we can #EndCruelty.

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