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Several horses dumped at Second Chance Animal Rescue Centre, Crockenhill

By Lynn Cox

An animal rescue centre is struggling to cope with an influx of starving horses which have been dumped at its gates over the past six weeks.

The Second Chance Animal Rescue Centre (SCAR) has seen seven starving horses left recently.

Lilly with her new foal, Oliver
Lilly with her new foal, Oliver

Many have not only been starving but in foal too. Others have had to have emergency veterinary treatment to save their lives.

One Chestnut mare, who has been named Lilly, was dumped near the rescue centre along with her 10-month-old foal. A few weeks after she arrived she gave birth to another foal, Oliver.

Another, who volunteers have named Bluebell, was left last week, is in foal and had to be taken to the emergency vet for treatment as she was suffering from salmonella.

Equine manager Susan Brady runs the centre with her partner, John Ranger.

Ms Brady, 38, said: “The number of horses we have had dumped is putting a strain on our resources.

“Some of them have been in a such a poor state and we are, at the moment, having to have the vet come in twice a day to see them.

“That costs us about £200 a day and we are already full up with animals.

“It seems people are dumping them when the horses are really in a bad way. This is what’s costing us so much, to bring them back to health.

Bluebell was in foal and suffering salmonella
Bluebell was in foal and suffering salmonella

Ms Brady thinks there are several reasons for the sudden influx of horses to the centre in Crockenhill, near Swanley.

She added: “It seems people just don’t have enough money to feed their horses. The chestnut dumped last week had probably not been fed for at least 10 or 12 days and as a result she is suffering from salmonella.

“Also there is no money in horses at the moment so it’s not worth people selling them and they seem to be dumping them when they are in really bad health.

“If people can’t look after or afford their horse, they should really be doing something about it before the animal gets really ill.”

Mr Ranger, 38, and Ms Brady set up SCAR in 2011. Mr Ranger had always dreamed of opening such a centre, and from a young age helped many injured animals and birds.

It relies solely on donations and is run with the help of a team of volunteers. The couple are hoping animal lovers will be able to help with donations or fundraising ideas to help cover the vet’s bills which have already costs thousands.

n If you would like to make a donation to the centre or you have any fundraising ideas, visit www.SCAR-Crockenhill.org or find its page on Facebook.

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