Many horses are being abandoned by their owners to graze illegally on land. This failure to accept responsibility is putting pressure on rescue homes.
Newark and Sherwood District Council have seized a pony after it was left to graze illegally on a play area. The council took action after they received complaints about fly-grazing. On February 12, a legal notice was erected which demanded that the pony’s owners have it removed within a week. As the pony is not micro chipped, nor does it have a horse passport, it is difficult to identify who it may belong to.
Horses are legally required to be both micro chipped and have passports, however, due to lack of enforcement many owners are not being held to account for their own animals.
“We get phone calls every day”
This is not a one off incident, as Joe Parker from Moo-Haven Horse Rescue explained that fly-grazing appears to be a worsening problem. “Abandonment is a big problem. We have sixteen horses at the minute, and our limit is eight. So we’re at double our capacity.”
“We get phone calls every day. We try and pass things on, we have friends who have rescue centres, but the cases that are really bad we go out ourselves and see what we can do.”
“If a horse can’t be identified, we have to ask why that horse is in that situation in the first place. The reason is because of the old owner. They’re not capable of taking care of a horse properly.”
With a record number of rescue horses that need to be rehomed, the RSPCA are encouraging anyone considering buying a horse to visit their local equine centres and consider adopting one instead.