Ponies found in ‘emaciated’ condition with no food or water

One of the colts was found standing over the other, dead pony. Pic: RSPCA

One of the colts was found standing over the other, dead pony. Pic: RSPCA - Credit: Archant

Vet attending the scene said it was ’very sad’ as one pony was found dead and another put down due to an abscess on its jaw.

The pony was found with its bones protruding. Pic: RSPCA.

The pony was found with its bones protruding. Pic: RSPCA. - Credit: Archant

A YOUNG woman who apparently ‘abandoned’ her three ponies has been found guilty of neglect after one was found dead and another had to be put down.

The abscess on the pony's face. Pic: RSPCA

The abscess on the pony's face. Pic: RSPCA - Credit: Archant

Chelsea Jenkins, 19, of Bristol, was charged with seven counts of causing unnecessary suffering to one bay pony mare and two chestnut coloured pony colts between September 4 and October 16 last year.

Jenkins did not appear in court and magistrates agreed to hear the case in her absence.

The ponies were discovered by RSPCA inspector Suzy Hannaby in October last year in a locked barn in Shebbear.


You may also want to watch:


One of the ponies was found dead on the ground, with another, emaciated pony stood over its body nuzzling it, the court heard.

John Wyatt, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA, said the floor of the barn was covered in faeces with no food or water present.

Most Read

Outside the barn, there was hay and feed which had been exposed to the elements and was wet, mouldy and unfit for consumption.

In a statement read to the court, equine vet Paul Jarvis, who also attended the scene, said it was obvious the horses had not been fed for some time.

He said the young chestnut pony that had survived measured one out of five on the body condition scale, with one being emaciated and five obese.

“The pony had an abscess on its left jaw, and the infection had been present for some time,” said Mr Jarvis.

“In my opinion it was suffering due to emaciation and no access to clean water or food.”

Mr Jarvis said it was likely the pony, which was one-to-two years old, had been suffering and recumbent days before it died.

“The scene was very sad,” he said.

“It gave the impression of a group of ponies that had been abandoned.”

The two surviving ponies were seized by police and taken to Mullacott Equine Hospital.

The young pony was examined and later had to be put down due to the abscess and infection on its jaw.

The court heard Jenkins admitted in interview she had purchased the colts in February 2012 and the mare in May 2012.

She had moved to Bristol in early October and said she had been looking to find somewhere for the ponies there.

Jenkins alleged she had left the animals in the care of Henry Tucker, who pleaded not guilty to five counts of causing unnecessary suffering to the ponies.

After hearing the evidence, magistrates found the case against Jenkins proven in her absence and issued a warrant with bail for her to attend for sentencing on May 1, at 2.30pm.

A case management hearing to set a trial date for Mr Tucker will also be held at the same time.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter