A Norfolk man has been banned from keeping horses for five years after causing unnecessary suffering to a black cob in Diss.
Guzzy Lee, 31, of Worcester Road, Norwich, had previously pleaded guilty on October 14 to charges under the Animal Welfare Act of causing unnecessary suffering to a horse called Crystal, including failing to adequately explore and address the causes of Crystal’s weight loss and/or diarrhoea.
He was sentenced to a five-year ban on keeping equines at Ipswich Magistrates’ Court on Friday, and was ordered to pay £200 costs.
Concerns had been raised about Crystal, also known as Spanish Girl, to the RSCPA in February. She was staying in a field in Hoppers Way.
But RSPCA inspector James Finch said Crystal had been transformed from being “poorly” and “bedraggled” to a “feisty” and “healthy” horse.
He also praised the work of Norfolk-based horse sanctuary Redwings.
I hardly recognise her in her current state now she has been transformed by Redwings — she bears no resemblance to the horse I found in FebruaryRSPCA inspector James Finch
“I hardly recognise her in her current state now she has been transformed by Redwings — she bears no resemblance to the horse I found in February,” he said.
“Any reasonable owner would have been able to see the poor state this poor horse was in then, and how urgently she needed to see a vet.
“She was dull, depressed and non-responsive, and was extremely weak on hind limbs. Her hooves were all overgrown and cracked, and she was very obviously a lot thinner than she should have been.
“Very sadly, she had also aborted a foal — Redwings’ vet said this would have been very recent and as the result of her poor state of health.
“The vet said she was suffering from cyathostominas - a condition which would have taken several months to develop. It was most probably caused to ineffective worming control - so easily avoided too.”
Redwings’ Welfare Veterinary Surgeon Nicola Berryman said: “When I attended Spanish Girl — formerly Crystal — she was absolutely emaciated, with a body condition score of just 0.5. Sadly when we found her she had recently aborted a foal, I suspect because her body couldn’t support it as she was in such poor condition and her health was very poor.
“She recovered from this trauma with no further complications and in fact she has made a really good recovery following her ordeal. She has gained weight and is now living with a lovely horse called Cookie from another recent welfare case we were involved in.
“Spanish Girl/Crystal is an older mare who needs regular dental work and it was clear she had dental issues when we first found her which were contributing to her poor body condition. She was also very nervous when she arrived at Redwings and she is now undergoing handling training from our behaviour team. She is making great progress and is definitely becoming more fond of people!
“We would like to express our thanks to the RSPCA for bringing this prosecution, which reinforces the need for every owner to take responsibility and ensure proper care for their animals.”