The conditions encountered by the charity’s vets and rescue team inspired the launch of its ‘Moor for Horses’ fundraising campaign to ensure more horses in need could be offered a new home, receive intense specialist care and to break the cycle of suffering among these groups.
Reflecting on this year’s rescues, Redwings’ Chief Executive Lynn Cutress said:
“Although the Sanctuary is fit to bursting, we refuse to waiver in our commitment to rescuing and caring for those most in need.
“Redwings has been monitoring and rescuing horses from moors and commons for years, but wet weather and the actions of irresponsible owners has tipped the situation towards crisis point. And as our sanctuary is operating at maximum capacity it has never been more crucial for our vets and rescue team to lend their experience and expertise to local communities and local councils as well as fellow welfare charities to bring those horses most in need to safety and to put in place measures to improve the situation long-term.
“I’d like to thank everyone who has worked tirelessly for horses in need this year, and those who have supported our Moor for Horses campaign which will ensure we can continue this vital work into next year and beyond.
“I’d also like to highlight the commitment of all our teams in-house and out in the field – our vets, field officers and care teams on our farms – who, as well as these larger operations, have shown as much dedication and care to the individual horse or pony rescue cases we have also taken into the Sanctuary so far this year”.
Redwings has made three rescue trips to Cornwall this year as part of multi-agency operations to assess the health of ponies on Bodmin Moor following which seven struggling ponies were removed and rehomed with Redwings in June and another 16 abandoned ponies were welcomed into the Sanctuary in September.
Also in September, Redwings partnered with the Bodmin Moor Commons Council to lead a large-scale round-up operation of more than 160 ponies for passporting and microchipping, in order to formally identify the ponies with owners and those who had grazing rights on the moor.
Meanwhile, 14 horses were signed over into Redwings’ permanent care following their rescue from harsh conditions at Llangynidr Common, in south Wales, and another seven have found a new home at the Sanctuary after their removal from similar circumstances at Gelligaer Common, also in south Wales. Both rescues took place in April.
Since reaching the Sanctuary, the rescued horses from the moors and commons have been making steady recoveries although some still require daily veterinary treatment. They are also due to undergo handling training to help them trust humans again.