The fundraising campaign for a foal rescued from harrowing circumstances in a British field has unexpectedly raced to its £10,000 target, thanks to a surprise £6000 donation from a pet insurer.
Animal Friends Insurance added the cash to the fundraising effort launched by the charity HorseWorld after Felix was rescued in mid-January.
Felix and a campanion, who was found dead in a drainage ditch, had been left to fend for themselves. The pair were estimated to be only four months old.
Felix was in very poor condition and taken for urgent veterinary attention.
The equine welfare manager for HorseWorld, Jerry Watkins, said the charity, which is responsible for more than 140 equines at its Bristol site, was delighted by the donation to Felix’s campaign.
“This will take us over our initial target of £10,000 to £10,204,” he said.
“Felix will be in HorseWorld Trust’s care for the next four to five years until he is strong enough to be backed and rehomed. He is just one of many that need our help, therefore this generous donation is very much appreciated.”
The charity hopes to continue to raise awareness about fly grazing, in which horse owners graze their animals unsupervised on private or public lands without permission.
Fly grazing has become an increasing problem in Britain due to the overbreeding of horses. HorseWorld estimates that around 7000 horses and ponies are currently at risk in Britain.
Animal Friends Insurance was founded by Elaine Fairfax in 1998 with the sole aim of providing pet insurance as a means to help support animal welfare charities.
Fairfax, who has worked with many animal charities throughout her life, decided to use her business skills to raise money for animal charities through pet insurance. To date Animal Friends Insurance has donated in excess of £2 million to animal charities worldwide.
“To see such an increase in horse and pony abandonment up and down the country is simply heart breaking,” Fairfax said.
“Thousands of horses are suffering unnecessarily because of the irresponsibility of humans.
“I have been a keen horsewoman since I was very young and when I heard poor Felix’s story I really wanted to help.
“Unfortunately it’s not just Felix who needs help; there are literally thousands of others like him. We are proud to support HorseWorld in the work they do helping these horses.”
Animal Friends Insurance is now one of the largest pet insurance providers in Britain, covering more than 400,000 animals. It offers cover for cats, dogs and horses, as well as rider insurance.