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Starving stallion left to die in Portarlington

Irish Horse Welfare Trust calls for Welfare Bill

Irish horse charity Irish Horse Welfare Trust (IHWT) has rescued a starving stallion left to die in Portarlington, Co. Laois.

“While the all around the country hay making and harvest is underway, the last thing you expect to come across in the height of summer is a starving horse, tethered to a tree with no access to food or water,” explains co founder of the charity, Sharon Newsome. “This however is exactly what one IHWT volunteer had to deal with.”

Realising that the animal was at the point of collapse, veterinary intervention was called for by volunteers and the horse was rescued. The stallion is now recovering at the IHWT centre in Woodenbridge, County Wicklow.

Commenting on his condition, Newsome says: “He was so weak and dehydrated that he could not hold his head up and he had to be put on a drip to receive 10 litres of fluid to rehydrate him. After 20 years of this work, I am always amazed at the mindset of the individuals who do this to what is a very beautiful mannered and kind horse.” 

Earlier this summer, the Irish horse charity launched the first ever equine ethical stamp, WELFARE AWARE, aimed at the racing, equestrian and corporate related community in Ireland.  Other campaigns such as its Golf Classic, supported by top Irish jockey Johnny Murtagh, are helping the IHWT raise much-needed funds for its work rescuing horses across Ireland, re-training ex-race horses and looking for new homes for the animals.

Irish bag designer Louise O’Leary has also recently donated 100 specially designed handbags to help the IHWT raise funds.

IHWT is also campaigning for the introduction of a long overdue Welfare Bill, which will help animal charities deal with ongoing problems.

“People might fail to appreciate the level of frustration that exists amongst those at the cold face, mainly due to poor legislation and the lack of recourse for the perpetrators of horrific acts of cruelty and neglect,” adds Newsome.

Responding to Joe Walsh, of Horse Sport Ireland (HSI), comments regarding the establishment of a working group to implement a new equine traceability system, Newsome says: “we are looking forward to working closely with the industry bodies, such as HSI, Horse Racing Ireland and Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association to deliver key solutions to comprehensively tackling equine abuse.  This it is hoped will offer a very positive long term solution to the equine crisis in Ireland.”

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