Malvern man banned from keeping horses after severe mistreatment - The Malvern Observer

Malvern man banned from keeping horses after severe mistreatment

Malvern Editorial 7th Feb, 2024   0

A WOMAN from Worcester and a man from Malvern have been banned from keeping equines for seven years for their involvement in the neglect of two horses in Ledbury.

The two Worcestershire residents were among three horse keepers in total to be convicted at Hereford Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, January 30 following the mistreatment of the equines who were found in an emaciated state.

Jessica Pugh, aged 21, of Arlington Place, Broom Hall, Worcester pleaded guilty to one offence relating to chestnut mare, Autumn, after failing to meet the equines needs.

Oliver Fairy, aged 21, Tan House Lane, Malvern pleaded guilty to one offence relating to a grey mare named Totti, again after failing to meet her needs.

Jessica’s mother, Kerry Pugh, aged 43, of Bosbury, Ledbury, Herefordshire was also convicted for the mistreatment of chestnut mare, Autumn.

All three were disqualified from keeping equines for seven years.

Fairy was handed a £450 fine, victim surcharge of £180, and ordered to pay £200 costs. Kerry and Jessica Pugh were handed a £196 fine, a victim surcharge to pay of £78 and they were ordered to pay £200 costs.

In mitigation Fairy accepted full responsibility for his failure to ensure Totti was provided with the correct vet assistance and nourishment.

It was heard that his involvement with Totti was relatively limited and another person was attending to the horses but ultimately he had the overriding responsibility for her care.

In mitigation for Jessica and Kerry Pugh it was heard that they had entrusted someone else to look after her and feed her daily, but admitted they should have taken responsibility themselves and checked.

They called the vet when the first signs of choking showed.

In a written statement, provided to the court, RSPCA inspector Suzane Smith, said she attended the stables in Ledbury on March 22, 2023 – after the RSPCA received a call concerning underweight horses.

Inspector Smith found Autumn (pictured) extremely underweight in a faeces ridden stable, without food or water.

The owner of the stables identified Jess Pugh and Oliver Fairy as owners of Autumn. Fairy told the RSPCA inspector that Jess Pugh was the horse’s owner and he had spoken to a vet the previous night regarding the horse suffering with choke – an obstruction of the esophagus, which is usually treatable but can lead to pneumonia if food is inhaled into the horses lungs.

Inspector Smith was informed another horse, a grey mare called Totti, had recently been at the stables but had been returned to its owner in North Wales on March 17, 2023. Fairy had leased or loaned this horse.

In a vet’s statement provided to the court, Totti’s body condition was 0.5 out of five with strong evidence to support ‘parasitism’ for the poor body condition of the horse.

Totti’s owner was called and encouraged them to obtain a veterinary assessment, which confirmed the horse had been suffering. The vet found an ‘above normal faecal worm egg count’.

The vet added that blood and faecal test results were consistent with a “high intestinal parasite burden” which could contribute to weight loss.

However, the test results could also be present with other diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease.

The weight loss was described as “severe” and would have occurred over a long period of time. The current keeper was informed and treatment for parasites was recommended.

Autumn was taken into the care of the RSPCA. Despite recovering from her weight loss, after a worming and re-feeding programme, her lameness due to foot sore meant her welfare was severely affected and was put down on veterinary grounds.


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