Major horse-gear theft in Rotorua includes para-equestrian tack

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This image shows the looped reins, and also one of the saddle pads that were stolen.
This image shows the looped reins, and also one of the stolen saddle pads.

A major theft of horse gear from Rotorua this week includes specialist tack used by those with disabilities.

Kate Honour’s horse truck was entered on Tuesday night after thieves forced the door to the living space, which provided access to the tack area.

The offenders made off with a major haul, which included two specialist double sets of padded looped reins, two single sets and one spare loop. Such reins are custom-built for amputees or those with cerebral palsy.

Honour, who featured on Horsetalk this week after her broodmare, Betty, gave birth to twins, Poppet and Fudge, said the truck was parked close to the house. It was only inches from her carport, which had been converted to stables to house Betty, Poppet and Fudge.

The break-in is believed to have occurred between 10pm and 1am on Tuesday night, with the offenders most likely carrying the items from the Hannah’s Bay property out to Lee Road before being removed from the area.

The haul would have filled a car at the least, she believes. It included 12 saddle blankets and four rugs, along with a host of other gear listed below. All the saddle blankets have burnt-orange para-equestrian disks on them, she said. The truck’s store of food was also removed, which cost her $500 to replace.

Honour estimated 40 percent of the tack had come from Britain, most of which was not available here.

She noted that the soft-drink was stolen, but not the wine and a bottle of spirits kept in the truck, raising suspicions that youngsters carried out the break-in.

The thieves also broke into a specialist medical kit and removed dangerous drugs. They damaged internal locks and threw 5kg of electrolytes around the truck. They went through the horse first-aid kit and then filled it with water.

“The truck literally looks like a bomb has gone off in it,” said Honour.

She said all the tack was marked – either leather branded or fabric painted. All of it had been photographed for easy identification.

The only good news was that customised para-equestrian saddles and bridles were not in the truck at the time of the break-in.

Honour appealed for help in tracing the items. People with information are welcome to email her, or contact Rotorua-based police officer Alan Atkins.

She provided the following list of lost items:

1 set of single reins – right rein has a soft padded loop for an amputee to use; 1 set of single black reins with a connecting bar – used by a person with one hand; 1 set black leather forked reins – used by rider with hand / arm problems; 2 black think rubber reins; 1 set elastic side reins; 1 red lunge line (cotton); 2 black new market clips; 1 Chain new market clip; 1 Set bungee (black) side reins; 1 cream coloured full halter; 1 blue cotton lead rope (new) with 3 new lead ropes attached (red green and white); 1 blue padded full halter with red lead rope; 1 new black leather showing lead with gold buckles; 2 white named (as in pen) Zilco riser pads – the ones with blue inserts; 1 older leather three-fold girth (hand-made); 1 Prochoice black girth; 1 Set (4) black and pink tendon boots; 1 5.3 blue with red trim Thermatex Rug (can only get from the UK); 1 5.3 Wetherbetta no-fill blue bubble rug; 1 5.0 Weetherbetta no fill fawn rug; 1 5.0 Weetherbeeta green check doona; 1 5.3 -Black Polar fleece; 1 5.3 Shires summer sheet white; 1 HKM Black bridle – full with plain snaffle bit (single joint); 1 14.5cm hanging cheek bit – french link; 1 loose ring snaffle – sprenger – single joint; 1 pair new black leathers – full; 1 black lunge whip; 4 black dressage whips; 12 pairs of various spurs with straps; 4 white Hygain logoed dressage saddle blankets – 1 with burnt orange para discs; 2 dark blue thick HKM dressage saddle blankets; 2 thick HKM white saddle blankets with HyGain and para badges; 1 X Roma white dressage saddle blanket – BOP Grade IV Champion 2014; 1 Roma white dressage saddle blanket – Equibrew and para badges; 2 white suede feel dressage saddle blankets; 1 White dressage saddle blanket – Hygain and para badges; 1 Small ESNZ-logoed black and white light jacket; 2 pairs white gloves; 1 left only glove; 4 stirrup to girth straps (stabilises the lower leg for a para rider); 6 Zilco tongue tie bands (used to hold para foot in stirrup); 2 soft body brushes – one stubben; 2 dandy brushes – 1 red small, 1 pink; 8 large sistema containers with muesli bars, chips, Le Snacks, biscuits, noodles, instant mash, Uncle Bens rice, 2-minute noodle in the pan mixes, Cuppa Soup, nuts, crackers; 4 tins bake beans; 2 tins fruit; 2 tins salmon; 3 large packets of chips; 1 pack of 8 cans of Lift softdrink; 6 burnt orange para badges

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