Extreme makeover, equine edition: Equifest four to show off their stunning transformations

Buggy, Hope and Charlie enjoy a romp at Penny Farm.
Buggy, Hope and Charlie enjoy a romp at Penny Farm – a far cry from their earlier circumstances.

Four young ponies who were rescued from dire circumstances will show off their amazing turnarounds at Britain’s huge equine expo, Equifest, this week.

Among the four from World Horse Welfare’s Penny Farm Rescue and Rehoming Centre in Lancashire is young Buggy, who hit the headlines last summer when he was found at just a few months old being eaten alive by maggots. Poor Buggy was so weak he could hardly stand up but thanks to the amazing care of the World Horse Welfare team he is now unrecognisable from the listless, emaciated pony he was when he came into the charity’s care.

Buggy as he was found in May 2016.
Buggy as he was found in May 2016.

Along with his barn mates, Buggy will compete in the PRP/RSPCA rescue classes at Equifest on Saturday August 12, bidding for a place in the evening championship where just one will be crowned Equifest Rescue Pony Champion for 2017.

From a perilous start, Buggy has thrived and will take his place at Equifest this week.
From a perilous start, Buggy has thrived and will take his place at Equifest this week.

World Horse Welfare Field Officer, Sarah Tucker said Buggy’s case was “one of the most horrific cases of neglect that I’ve seen in the years I’ve worked for World Horse Welfare”.

Floss when she was found.
Floss when she was found.

Buggy is being joined at the show by Floss, Charlie and Hope, who are putting their pasts behind them to show off their amazing transformations.

Floss is going well under saddle and will be ridden at Equifest by her groom, Karen.
Floss is going well under saddle and will be ridden at Equifest by her groom, Karen.

Floss was found weak and neglected at less than a year old. She is now flourishing in her ridden work and will be showing off her paces with her groom, Karen, at the competition.

Charlie on arrival at World Horse Welfare.
Charlie on arrival at World Horse Welfare.

Charlie was underweight, suffering from worms and a severe lice infestation when he was discovered but is now a very handsome ridden pony who is brimming with confidence.

Charlie has shaken off is earlier problems and is ready to shine at Equifest.
Charlie has shaken off is earlier problems and is ready to shine at Equifest.

Little Hope came into World Horse Welfare Penny Farm in September 2016 with her mother who was extremely emaciated and struggling to survive, having given all of her strength to keeping her young foal alive. Sadly, Hope’s mother was in such a terrible state that the team had to make the difficult decision to put her to sleep and so Hope became an orphan at just a few months old.

Hope with her mother, who sadly could not be saved.
Hope with her mother, who sadly could not be saved.

Another orphan foal was in the farm at the same time and bonded instantly with Hope to become an inseparable pair. Hope is now a beautiful yearling who has flourished and has a bright future.

World Horse Welfare Penny Farm Rescue and Rehoming Centre Manager, Fran Williamson, said the charity was proud of the amazing recoveries the four ponies have made. “I am very excited to see them perform at Equifest. Whatever placings they do or don’t receive at the show, we will still be celebrating what they have achieved given their difficult backgrounds and times they have encountered in their lives.

“On top of this, they are great ambassadors for World Horse Welfare and the high quality of horses and ponies we have ready for rehoming so I would ask anyone attending Equifest to make sure to give them the big round of applause they deserve.”

Find out more about rehoming: www.worldhorsewelfare.org/rehoming

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