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Matilda the horse found starving in Harold Hill field put to sleep

12:00 13 February 2014

Matilda had to be put down

Matilda had to be put down

Archant

A horse so thin it resembled a skeleton has had to be put to sleep, the RSPCA has revealed.

Now the animal charity is appealing for information about the owner of the emaciated beast, which was found in a field off Lower Bedfords Road, Harold Hill, last week.

The black cob, named Matilda by RSPCA and Redwings staff, was aged between eight and 12 years.

She was suffering from liver damage and her body was shutting down, leaving her so skinny the bones in her hips and spine were visible. She was too ill to save.

Redwings senior field officer Jo Franklin said: “I found this case absolutely heartbreaking. Poor Matilda was like a skeleton.

“There was nothing we could do for her. Yet she was such a fighter, she had such a sweet nature.

“Matilda didn’t deserve this – it is disgusting that anyone could allow their horse to get into such a state and not ask for help.”

Matilda was no more than about 14 hands high and had a white blaze on her face.

Her feet had been trimmed so officers believe someone had been looking out for her “quite recently”.

Insp Virginia Ross said: “There have been horses in this particular field for years and we haven’t had to remove any due to welfare problems.

“However, poor Matilda was alone in a corner and we don’t know if she had been there a long time or just left there recently.

“She had a microchip but it was an untraceable European chip so we are no closer to finding out who Matilda’s owner is.”

Anyone with information should contact the RSPCA inspector appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

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