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Britain’s saddest horse has been looking for a home of her own for five years

Britain’s saddest horse has been looking for a home of her own for five years

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Hope had the worst possible start in life – but that hasn’t stopped her becoming a truly loving horse.

She was found as a foal, collapsed and just hours from death.

Heartbreakingly, she was infested with worms, covered in lice and had diarrhoea.

But since she was taken in by the RSPCA at Potters Bar in Hertfordshire Hope has made an amazing recovery.

However, the five-year-old thoroughbred cross breed bay has been cared for by the charity ever since and all she wants is a home of her own.

Hope has been in a rescue centre for almost five years

Hope is described as: “A very loving girl, she does however have a huge amount still to learn and will need someone very caring and experienced to teach her.

“Hope has learnt to wear a bridle and be lead in hand during her stay with us.

“Hope can be a little nervous when being groomed but has gained confidence.”

Her ideal forever home will be an owner who has dealt with young horses before.

Another horse who is also desperate for a new home in four-year-old Lily.

The New Forest cross breed arrived at the same centre as Hope starving and fighting for her life.

She was found as a young foal, starving and riddled with worms

She has now made a full recovery and loves being around people.

The centre describe her as: “Full of character, very cheeky and incredibly intelligent. She picks up new things very quickly, including how to open gates.

“She is a bit of a show off and loves to strut her stuff in the field, showung off her very flashy trot.

“She also likes to think she is a race horse when she races our tractor up and down the field.”

The two horses are part of a growing number who need rescuing each month.

The RSPCA rescued more than 1,000 horses from neglect and suffering last year and many of them still need new homes.

And the crisis, which has been caused by the high costs of vets bills, the rising costs of hay and feed and falling demand forsome kinds of horses, is showing no sign of slowing down.

Lily was also fighting for her life when she was rescued by the RSPCA

The RSPCA has three specialist equine centres – Lockwood in Surrey, Gonsal Farm in Shropshire and Felledge in County Durham, and equine rehoming facilities at Millbrook in Surrey, Southridge in Hertfordshire and Leybourne in Kent.

This month is the charity’s Adoptober and while 328 horses and ponies were found new homes last year, hundreds more still need to be taken on.

Dr Mark Kennedy, equine welfare specialist at the RSPCA said: “Many people know how rewarding rescuing a dog or cat can be, and what a fantastic range of animals come into our care looking for new homes, and we really hope horse people will see that it’s the same for horses – we have some excellent horses and ponies just waiting for a chance in a new home.

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“I have rescue horses myself, and know how satisfying it is working with them and bringing out their full potential.

“In particular, mine have been very responsive to clicker training and it has helped bring out their playful and intelligent nature.

“Seeing horses who have had a bad start in life developing into fantastic companions or successful riding and competition horses is incredibly rewarding, made even better by knowing you are helping other needy horses by freeing up spaces for them in welfare charity care.”

Anyone in a position to offer a home to one of the RSPCA’s rescue horses can visit the charity’s rehoming pages .

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