An investigation has been launched after a horse got caught up in a fence and had to be put down due to the severity of its injuries.

The tragedy unfolded last week when Ruby Fowler, 11, went to check on her horse, named Spirit, which she had permission to keep on the field at the Fagley Youth and Community Centre.

But Ruby, who stopped at the field before making her way to school, was met with a scene of devastation.

Her mum April Watson, 30, said: “She came running up in hysterics. I tried calming her down and ran down to see what had happened.

“There was blood all over and she was just laid on the floor.”

Mrs Watson said Spirit got caught on a piece of fence which was on the floor and shocking pictures taken at the scene show the metal fence covered in blood in the aftermath of the incident.

All of Spirit’s legs were injured and the fence had spiked through to the bone one of her back and front legs.

“We are thinking she’s walked over, the fence has been on the floor, it’s obviously caught her foot,” Mrs Watson said.

She said they guessed Spirit had been agitated by this, causing her to slip.

Spirit was also wounded in her belly area and the family received the heart wrenching news from a vet that her lungs were collapsing and she could not be saved.

Mrs Watson said a company called Subscan had been doing work in the bottom corner of the field. She claimed a piece of fencing had been left down on the floor.

She claimed the company told her the fence panel had been put back up, but it was going to check cameras on the mini diggers.

Speaking about the impact on Ruby, Mrs Watson added: “She spent every day with the horse, before school, after school. It was like her best friend - everybody around knew they were best friends.

“She was absolutely distraught, she was just screaming and crying. She’s very upset about what’s happened.”

Mrs Watson said Spirit was “part of the family” and added: “Everybody has been so upset and sad about it. It still doesn’t feel real.”

Ruby got Spirit for her birthday around seven months ago and was due to take part in a show with her later this month.

Now the family plan to get some pictures made for Ruby’s bedroom wall to remember Spirit by.

A Subscan spokesperson said: “We can confirm that Subscan UDS Ltd have carried out work at the former Fagley Youth and Community Centre in Bradford between Tuesday, May 8 and Wednesday, May 9.

“We were made aware on Friday, May 11 of a tragic incident involving a horse at the aforementioned site and immediately began an internal investigation into the matter.

“This investigation is currently ongoing.”