Tue, 12 May 2020
CONFRONTATIONS between horse owners and families giving the animals toxic foodstuffs have led to police being alerted.
Angry owners have accused well-meaning people out exercising of treating the creatures as their own personal “petting zoo”.
The potential flashpoint is at Henwick Farm, off Turnpike Road.
Mel Jones, of Henwick Farm Liveries, said: “There already have been altercations between the owners of the ponies and people thinking they have the right to feed these animals, and this is going to escalate if any of these animals get sick or even die.
“Just because horses eat grass it doesn’t mean that they can consume any vegetable matter.
“Tomatoes, avocados, potatoes and grass cuttings have all been found dumped over the fences – and of these are toxic to horses.”
She said she had contacted police and added: “This is getting out of hand as people are angry when are asked not to feed the horses.
“People are looking for ways to entertain themselves... sadly they are ignoring requests to only say ‘hello’ to the ponies and they’re bringing carrier bags of old vegetables which can be toxic to the animals.”
Meanwhile, said Ms Jones, “the owners are getting very upset about the risk caused to their animals because people seem to think that they have the right to feed them as if it were a petting zoo”.
She said: “It might seem trivial, but this is a big issue to anyone who has animals close to public access land – I’d hate to see this being reported when one of the ponies has died a nasty death from inconsiderate people.”