An abandoned horse is recovering slowly after being left with a fractured leg while protecting a foal from being attacked by a stallion in a north Hampshire field.
Dancer, a 12-year-old gelding, was found injured in a team of 14 horses on July 12, where the stallion was found to be galloping around the field and frightening the mares and foals.
RSPCA inspector Nicola Denham said the horse had tried to intervene to protect the mare and foal.
She said: “In doing so, Dancer suffered a nasty kick to one of his back legs, which has left him in a really bad way.
“We have still been unable to trace Dancer’s owners, but in the meantime we have been caring for this beautiful boy.
“An x-ray showed that he suffered a splint fracture in his leg and infection was already setting in, so we had to call in urgent vet treatment to give him the best chance of survival.”
Tests also revealed Dancer had strangles, a serious bacterial infection extremely contagious between horses, and had to be quarantined and received specialist ‘flushing’ treatment to tackle it.
Since sustaining the injury, Dancer is now in the care of the RSPCA at a specialist boarding yard where his recovery is slow but he is responding well to treatment.
And the RSPCA has confirmed this week that Dancer is looking a lot happier, with vets continuing to treat his leg.
Insp Denham added: “Sadly, situations like this with large groups of horses including stallions which are carelessly left to breed is a recipe for disaster.
“As inspectors, we see this sort of situation far too often, and owners should never leave stallions in a herd like this.
“Thankfully we managed to trace an owner of the stallions and strongly advised them to remove him from the field due to the risk he posed to the other horses, and I’m pleased to say they followed our advice.
“I have also been to check on the mare and foal several times since and they are doing well.”
Dancer’s treatment has cost the RSPCA almost £6,000, and they are appealing for horse lovers with some spare funds to donate for continued treatment.
To donate, visit mydonate.bt.com/donation/start.html?charity=68649.