Slinky, a once-neglected horse who was rescued from a stable door-high in manure, is among those benefitting from a new life under the British Horse Society’s (BHS) Second Chance scheme. Run in collaboration with the RSPCA, the initiative gives rescue horses and ponies the chance to be rehabilitated in a BHS centre, and the charity says “there has never been more of a need” for the service.

Gelding Slinky was saved from squalid conditions . He was stuck in a stable as his droppings had been allowed to build up to above the level of the door, and it took firefighters almost a day to free him. The youngster was so traumatised that he was left “physically weak and mentally scared”.

Slinky when he was rescued

He was given a new home at Parbold Equestrian Centre in West Lancashire under the Second Chance scheme. After arriving, he was too nervous to leave his stable, even after a few days, but after two years of physical and mental rehabilitation from the expert care of Yard Manager Carrie Byrom, he was able to turn a huge corner. Slinky can now be ridden regularly and has proved himself a keen, scopey jumper.

The BHS is appealing for public support of the Second Chance scheme, with current conditions making it tougher than ever for charities like the BHS and RSPCA to tackle the ongoing ‘equine crisis’.

“There has never been more of a need for this project,” a BHS spokesman told Your Horse. “The long-standing ‘equine crisis’ of over-breeding, neglect and abandonment of horses continues and many equine welfare charities fear that the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic and the rising cost of living can only make matters worse.

“Second Chance allows horses to be rehabilitated by equine professionals at BHS Approved Riding Centres, who have the experience and expertise to take on these rescued horses, rehabilitate them, and transform their lives in a safe, secure environment.”

To find out more about the Second Chance scheme and to pledge your support, click here

Images top and bottom: Slinky thriving in his new life at Parbold Equestrian Centre

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