Roblin – The Ontario SPCA says its in urgent need of horse supplies. This is the first time the agency has put out a call for donations of this kind. The reason? The recent hay shortage. The OSPCA fears if the cost of hay continues to rise – more animals will be surrendered.
Meet Lady and Bernie. Both horses are rescues. When the animals were removed from their owner they were placed with Josh Matson on his foster farm. Almost a year later and the horses are now thriving. Matson is also an Animal Cruelty Inspector with the Ontario SPCA. He says its not uncommon for him to investigate horses living in poor conditions.
Josh Matson/Animal Cruelty Inspector, OSPCA
“The biggest thing is there’s debris in the paddock, there’s no feed or water. It’s body condition is pretty bad, it’s hairs very dull looking, it’s just looks like a very poor, sad animal.”
And with the recent hay shortage the OSPCA fears more people won’t have the means to properly care for their animals.
“Hay gets more expensive when there is a shortage. People run out of hay and don’t have another option but to surrender their horse…”
That’s Kristin Mullin. The Animal Centre Manager says the OSPCA is in urgent need for donations of warm winter wear – like blankets and rain sheets – as well as general horse supplies such as feed and brushes.
Kristin Mullin/ Animal Centre Manager, OSPCA
“A lot of the horses that we do see coming in are underweight, they don’t have great body conditions, they have health concerns so sometimes they need a little extra padding to keep them warm during the winter months.”
And if the hay shortage continues – officials say it could lead to more surrenders or horses having to be removed. That has the organization on the lookout for foster farms. The OSPCA website currently has 5-horses available for adoption.
John Matson/Animal Cruelty Inspector, OSPCA
“It’s nice when you take them out and you get to see them progress, the hair is coming back nice, they’re perked up, they’re running around and it’s nice to see they’ll actually look happy, ears up and they look like they’re full of life again.”
Like Lady and Bernie – two horses who were given a second chance at life.
Donations can be dropped off at any Ontario SPCA office – including Napanee, Brockville and Cornwall. You can also call 310-SPCA for more information.