Horse found neglected with overgrown 12 inch hooves

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Jerry the horse had been overfed and neglected so badly that he had gained 20 stone and could barely walk. His hooves had become so overgrown they ended up looking like flippers, curling and growing forwards.

The poor horse was rescued from a farm in Somerset, where he had been living with a herd of cows, along with another overweight horse Jo-Jo.

Jerry’s hooves should have been trimmed every six to eight weeks, but had been left for over two years to grow out of control.

Joanne Vaughn of Horse World equine rehabilitation centre, said: ‘Jerry’s hooves measured 12 inches from heel to toe, and were turned up like Aladdin’s slippers.’

Both horses had been severely overfed, which experts say is just as bad as being underfed. Jerry and Jo-Jo had a combined weight loss target of 60 stone, and six months on they have lost almost 40 stone between them and counting.

Joanne said: ‘When most people think of animal cruelty, it’s a lack of food that comes to mind. But as with children, overfeeding the wrong types of food can be equally unkind. The pain these animals went through is unthinkable. This was completely avoidable and an inexcusable case of neglect.’

X-rays during treatment showed that Jerry’s hoof bones had rotated and dropped and if they had been left for much longer, the bone could have penetrated through the sole of the hoof. Both horses are now on painkillers every day and have special shoes for support as they learn to walk again after having their hooves trimmed.

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