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Dumped horses and foals saved from deadly fate

Two mares and their young foals are being nursed back to health at Blue Cross rehoming centre in Rolleston-on-Dove, Staffordshire, after being abandoned with little access to food or water. Found amongst a larger group of horses who were all in a bad way, the four now at Blue Cross were in the worst condition with protruding ribs and hip bones. One of the foals was found cowering behind his mum and found to be suffering from photosynthesis, which means he is sensitive to sunlight.

Seven-year-old ‘Little Miss Agatha’ and her foal Rio and four-year-old Marple and her foal Poirot were found in a field in the Midlands. The fencing was falling down and in the past the horses had been seen wandering into the nearby dangerous busy road. 

Tess Scott-Adams, Centre Manager at Blue Cross in Rolleston said: “We were so worried about this group of horses when they arrived. We feared Little Miss Agatha and her foal, who were in an even worse state than the other pair, would not make it. But thanks to the special care and medication they received they are now well enough to find a home.”

Rio was very weak and when the team realised he wasn’t feeding from his mum the team tried to encourage him to drink replacement milk and put them both on a feeding plan to help them gain weight and improve their overall condition. Both foals are doing well and are being weaned off their mums and will be looking for new homes in the New Year. Their mums are also now healthy and being assessed as potential riding ponies and will also look for loving new homes soon.  

The foals are looking for a short-term home until they are four years old when Blue Cross will need to re-assess their future as potential riding ponies. They will need a companion of a similar age in their new home and need to be cared for by someone who has experience of caring for and handling young ponies. Rio is vulnerable to sunburn so will need special care and monitoring when he is outside in the summer months to prevent skin sores due to his condition.

To find out about horses and cats looking for new homes through Blue Cross in Rolleston, or to make a donation towards their care visit or contact the centre on 0300 777 1520 or

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