Before: Clydesdale mare Freja weighed 380kg when she was taken into care by the SPCA – the average weight for her breed is 500kg. PHOTOS/SUPPLIED
One of the horses involved in one of the worst cases the SPCA has ever seen, has made a remarkable recovery since being taken into care.
Freja, a Clydesdale-type mare was one of six horses owned by Masterton woman Lindsay Fraser, 68, who came to the SPCA’s attention during an investigation into severe animal neglect and suffering.
When SPCA visited her Mikimiki Rd property in March 2018, they found three horses in “light body conditions” and lacking access to sufficient grazing.
Freja weighed just 380kg instead of the 500kg typical of her breed – she was later given a body condition score of one out of five and admitted to a veterinary hospital.
The SPCA also took possession of a 20-year-old gelding named Cookie who weighed just 360kg but should have weighed between 400kg to 450kg, and later another Shire mare named Keera.
A two-year-old stallion named Max was found to be emaciated, recumbent and tangled in a horse cover and later euthanised, as were two other mares found on a separate property on Norfolk Rd in Carterton.
SPCA inspector team leader Ben Lakomy said the change he had seen in Freja was remarkable.
“Seeing how amazing Freja looked when she reached ideal body condition really highlighted what a poor state she was in.
“I am so thankful to the amazing foster carers who helped Freja bounce back to full health.”
Fraser was recently sentenced in the Masterton District Court to 150 hours’ community work, ordered to pay the SPCA $20,000 relating to three animal cruelty charges.
She was also disqualified from owning stock animals, except for two, for a period of 10 years.
Any horses in her care were ordered to be immediately forfeited, though a small grace period of about a month was allowed for her to hand over all other stock animals.