A hungry and dehydrated pony has been rescued in Britain after being trapped behind a hawthorn bush for four days.
The young pony reported became trapped while trying to escape his field and access a neighbouring pasture.
The charity World Horse Welfare came to the small black cob’s rescue after being alerted by a caller who had seen the pony on two occasions four days apart and noticed that he had not moved.
Field Officer Rachel Andrews tore down parts of the hawthorn bush, freeing up enough space to put a head-collar on the pony. She was then able to lead him to safety.
“This pony had somehow got stuck between a hawthorn bush and fencing consisting of barbed wire and post and rail. It appeared he was trying to access a neighbouring field.
“I knew I just had to create a space to get him out, so I tore down bits of the hedge and moved some of the broken post and rail until there was room to lead him to safety.
“As soon as I had freed him, he dragged me over to the nearest puddle and started drinking. We think he was in the bush for four days so it’s no wonder he was dehydrated.”
The pony was not only dehydrated but underweight, having been unable to access food for several days.
Although there was no lasting damage, Rachel praised the caller for acting when she did: “Thankfully we got to this horse before it was too late. If he’d been in there much longer, he would have really started to struggle.”
The owner was contacted and moved the horse to a new, secure field after being advised that the current situation was unsafe.
The charity says horse owners should visit their horses and ponies at least once a day to check on their welfare and ensure any problems are quickly identified and dealt with as necessary.
Fencing should be regularly checked and repaired if required to prevent any injuries and to ensure it is adequate to keep the horses safely contained.
In this case it appeared the pony was trying to access the grazing in the neighbouring field. During winter, forage such as hay or haylage should be provided in fields where grazing is scarce.