Five mares from a group of rescued ponies admitted to Blue Cross animal rehoming centre in Rolleston, Staffordshire have given birth to foals.
The five mares were amongst 11 cob-type ponies taken in by the charity following a large-scale operation by RSPCA and partners in February. Some 43 ponies were rescued from flooded fields in Wellingborough. Many were very thin, covered in fleas and lice and most had little, if any, experience of being handled.
It is understood that they had been dumped in the area for unauthorised grazing — fly grazing — and the landowner was able to seize the horses with the help of the RSPCA under the Control of Horses Act. The owners could not be identified as the ponies were not microchipped.
Verity Anderton-Johnson, Rehoming Co-ordinator at Blue Cross said: “All of the ponies were in a bad way when we took them in. They were very nervous and one in particular, Soar, was so emaciated it was a shock to discover she was in foal. It was wonderful to arrive at the centre some mornings to find a new baby resident and that mum had managed the birth without any help and that they are all doing so well. We are very proud of these mums.”
Bunny was born on Good Friday and Victory on VE Day and the other three during May and June. All are doing well and growing in confidence and many of the foals enjoy having a fuss from the centre team. While it is a very happy ending for some of the foals who are soon to go to new homes, others are still looking to find places where there are with other mares and foals until the foals are weaned.
An RSPCA spokesperson said the charity was delighted that the mares and foals were doing well in the care of Blue Cross.
“During the operation, which involved partner organisations, a total of 43 horses were rescued. It was a difficult task as it was such a large site with lots of hazards such as a river, lake and flooded fields so our water rescue teams were also called to join the effort.
“None of the animals were microchipped so we were unable to identify and locate their owner to hold them responsible. But it is great that all the horses are now returning to full health and will go on to be rehomed.”