Redwings' vets and horse-care teams are hailing a “summer baby boom” after helping six newborn foals take their first teetering steps into the world, as well as caring for an irresistibly cute donkey foal who arrived at the Sanctuary earlier this year at just 10 days old.
Three youngsters – Peaches, Sophie and Roald – have been born to mothers (Mrs Clonkers, Roly Poly and Beauregarde) who were found alongside 13 other ponies, struggling to survive in bleak conditions on Bodmin Moor last September.
Each member of this gorgeous group was named after Roald Dahl and his famous characters in honour of what would have been the author’s 100th birthday.
Meanwhile, teeny tiny Max and Big Star were born at the Sanctuary following the rescue of their mothers (Charlotte and Helen) from similarly tough conditions on Llangynidr Common in south Wales last year.
This herd, now totalling 14 ponies, was named after GB gold medal winners at the Rio Olympics – Max being named after gymnast Max Whitlock and Big Star after Nick Skelton’s award-winning showjumper.
Newest addition, lovable Chad, was born to mare Brook, who was one of a group of six ponies rescued in January this year having been found very thin and suffering from high worm burdens and overgrown feet at a site near Ipswich.
They were named after Suffolk rivers in a nod to where they are from.
While each of these cheeky youngsters remain under the watchful eye of Redwings’ vets at sites closed to the public, fluffy donkey foal Amos has been spending his first summer enjoying plenty of extra fuss from crowds at the charity’s Caldecott visitor centre, near Great Yarmouth.
Amos was just 10 days old when he came to Redwings, alongside his mum Matilda and dad Jeremiah in January, after their previous owner began to struggle to look after them and contacted the charity for help.
Donkeys are sensitive souls who require a lot of special care, which can make it very difficult for them to find suitable forever homes, so Redwings has an open-door policy for these lovable long-eared creatures.
From being so little that he had to be lifted off the horse box upon his arrival, adorable Amos has grown into a handsome and friendly donkey – making him and his parents the perfect new additions to Redwings Caldecott’s large donkey herd.
Lynn Cutress, Redwings’ Chief Executive, said: “Over the last 12 months, we’ve rescued several large groups of ponies from terrible conditions and, inevitably, discovered many of the mares to be in foal when they arrived at the Sanctuary.
"We’re always so proud to be able to give these horses the chance to bring their babies into the world in a safe loving environment.
“However, due to the neglect their mothers endured, foals born at the Sanctuary sometimes require extra help from our vets, and this summer was no exception with Max needing a plasma transfusion and Chad receiving extensive treatment for an infection. Happily, they’re all doing well now!
“We promise a safe home for life to all foals who are born at Redwings or are taken into our care, like Amos. However, at a cost of over £3,000 per year to care for a horse, excluding additional vet treatment, taking on so many offspring places a great demand on our resources, so our heartfelt thanks go out to all our supporters who continue to help fund our work and enable us to give these foals and their mums a safe and loving home.”
Redwings is a 100% publicly funded charity. To find out more about supporting their work and to make a donation towards the care of the charity’s adorable foals, visit www.redwings.org.uk