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Wicklow man convicted under the Animal Health and Welfare Act

A Wicklow man has been convicted of failing to safeguard the health and welfare of a horse contrary to section 11 of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013. The man admitted the offence at Carlow District Court yesterday, 4th March 2016.

The case resulted from an investigation by ISPCA Chief Inspector Conor Dowling in December 2014 when he responded to a complaint from a member of the public in relation to horses in Blessington, Co. Wicklow.

ISPCA Chief Inspector Dowling described to the court how he found an aged bay thoroughbred gelding in very poor condition on lands that were littered with barbed wire, broken glass and other hazards. In addition to its poor condition, the horse had long cracked hooves, a swelling to his face and a discharge from his nose.

Inspector Dowling seized the animal and organised its removal. Veterinary examinations revealed a chronic infection most likely as a result of a mass growing in the sinus. Due to the extensive and complicated nature of his health problems the horse was euthanized on humane grounds.

Judge Colin Daly told the man that his treatment of the horse was “a terrible abuse of your trust”. He fined him €500, ordered him to make a contribution of €500 to the ISPCA and to pay €600 in state costs. Judge Daly elected not to impose a disqualification on this occasion but told the man that he would do so if he ever appeared before him on a similar charge in the future. 

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