| 2.6°C Dublin

Hell to Hay Owner's sickening neglect led to pony being put down after it was left to rot

Such was the lack of care visited by Corkman Patrick Walsh on the two ponies that one, found with "horrifically overgrown hooves" and an open "maggot infested wound", had to be put down

Close

Patrick Walsh left the two animals to suffer

Patrick Walsh left the two animals to suffer

Patrick Walsh left the two animals to suffer

Meet the horse owner facing possible jail time over the "outrageous neglect" of two ponies.

Such was the lack of care visited by Corkman Patrick Walsh on the two ponies that one, found with "horrifically overgrown hooves" and an open "maggot infested wound", had to be put down.

The suffering of Walsh's ponies was laid bare at a recent sitting of Youghal District Court by ISPCA inspector Alice Lacey.

She told how she visited the property at Clashmore in Waterford on June 2, 2020, and both were struggling to stand on "overgrown hooves" while one had "an open wound was infested with maggots inside the cavity of his hoof".

Close

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Approached by the Sunday World at his home in Kilteagh on Wednesday afternoon, Walsh declined to ­comment.

"I've had enough of it, go on now," he said.

Walsh, with an address at Youghal Road, Killeagh, Co Cork, was before Youghal District Court on October 15.

He pleaded guilty to two counts under section 12 of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013.

The case, taken by the Department of Agriculture, related to Ms Lacey's visit to the property at Reanaboola, in response to a report about two ponies in a field.

She told the court that it was immediately obvious that one of the ponies, a chestnut male lying down, was in distress.

He was overweight, and his hooves were "horrifically" overgrown.

Close

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Bumble was saved after being found with overgrown hooves

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

He struggled to get to his feet and, when he eventually managed to stand up, he was "very unsteady" and unable to bear weight on his left front leg.

The second pony, a grey dun female, also had very overgrown hooves and was very overweight.

Both ponies were immediately removed to the ISPCA Equine Rescue Centre in Mallow for an urgent veterinary assessment.

The female pony, later called Bumble, was estimated to be about 18 years old. The vet said she was morbidly obese and suffering from laminitis.

All four hooves were overgrown, and it was evident that hoof care had been "severely neglected". She was also suffering from sweet itch, skin inflammation.

The male chestnut pony was estimated to be eight years old. He was extremely lame and obese.

On closer inspection, an open wound that was infested with maggots was found inside the cavity of the hoof.

Close

X-rays of the front two limbs confirmed a "severe" rotation of the pedal bone in the hoof, indicating that the pony had been suffering from laminitis for a long time.

On veterinary advice, the vet put him down to prevent further suffering.

Following urgent farrier care and a strict diet in ­ISPCA care, Bumble made a full recovery and was later rehomed.

ISPCA inspector Lacey said: "If owners are unable to look after their animals responsibly, then they shouldn't have them; it's that ­simple."

"These two ponies had suffered needlessly. It was distressing to see the level of neglect they would have endured over a prolonged period.

"They would have been in severe pain with every step they took, which could have been prevented with proper ­animal husbandry and care.

Close

"Owners have a legal and moral ­obligation to provide for the animals in their care.

"In this case, there was a complete failure and lack of action to address these issues, which led to both ponies' prolonged and unnecessary suffering. Turning a blind eye to such issues will not be tolerated."

On imposing the disqualification, Judge Brian O'Shea ­commented, "The most ­aggravating factor, in this case, is the significant neglect of these two animals - it's outrageous in fact."

"The accused bought these ­animals, knew very little and ­simply neglected them," the judge added.

He adjourned that matter until June 3, next year, indicating that if the accused failed to pay the costs by that time, he would convict, fine €1,000 and impose a two-month custodial sentence.

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Top Videos





Privacy