Neglected Shetland pony’s hooves not trimmed for 10 years

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A neglected Shetland pony’s hooves had not been trimmed for 10 years. Hidden away in a shed where no one could see him, after a decade of neglect, he could barely walk. When rescued by the Animaux en Péril, the starving pony weighed 150 pounds; a healthy pony should weigh 450 pounds. Both the pony and a malnourished horse had been living in a makeshift tiny shelter where they stood on a two-foot heap of manure for the past few months. The pony’s hooves were so long they curled around at 540 degrees – rescuers had never encountered neglect like this in the past.

Animaux en Peril (Animals in Danger) operating in Belgium, took custody of the two animals when their owner decided to surrender them. Dubbed Poly and Everest, rescuers were shocked when  they first saw the animals and the horrible conditions they had been forced to live. On the organization’s Facebook page, advocates gasped at the photos of the pony on his arrival:

“We’ve seen our lot of neglected and overgrown hooves, sometimes with rotations of 180°, but the 540° (one and a half turns) spiral that we saw here was a shocking first in our 24 year career.”
As well as the deformed hooves,  bothPoly and Everest had been covered with lice and each registered a body index of a “1” out of “5.” Staff immediately trimmed and repaired Poly’s hooves, shampooed the duo and sheared them to get rid of any lice. Both welcomed the warm coats they were able to wear and their recovery has been remarkable, although “after” photos show Poly’s joints have been severely affected by the long-term negligence. Follow their rehabilitation on the organization’s Facebook.
Donations to help more animals like Poly and Everest can be made here. 
(Photos of pony’s hooves not trimmed for 10 years courtesy of Facebook’s Animaux en Peril)
Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.




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  1. Despicable and horrible owners! Charge them with animal neglect and cruelty! I would leave them in a very small stall and have them live with their own urine and fecal matter.

  2. I imagine a saw was needed to get to a place where the “trimming” would begin. I hope this pair make it into great homes with people that know how to spoil neglected equines.

  3. Now how can someone own an animal and let them get in this kind of condition. The description give of the life these two animals lived is beyond sad. People can certainly disappoint. I think God and Karma keep track though!

  4. This is so so sad! Unfortunately horses are right at the top of the list of animals who are abused and neglected! Along with dogs and cats,horses are abused a lot,and just like dogs and cats they just want to be loved! Too many humans out there that brutalize animals and they need to be punished! I hope this poor horse is feeling better!


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