A WOMAN has been banned from keeping equines for 10 years after RSPCA inspectors found a pregnant pony with all of her spine, pelvis and ribs visible.

Sara Leanne Turner, 36, of Silwood Drive, Eccleshill, neglected two piebald cobs and left them in a “tragic” condition before RSPCA officers arrived to rescue the dying animals. Inspectors were called to a stable yard in Fagley Road, Bradford, in April this year following a call for concern for the welfare of horses.

On arrival Inspector David Holgate and Inspector Kris Walker found two ponies who who were left to death in a "distressing" scene.

One pony named Blue had just given birth to a premature foal which sadly had to be put to sleep by a vet shortly afterwards. The other, named Willow, had collapsed in the stable which was dirty and covered in hazardous substances.

Sadly, by the time they arrived the horses’ condition was so far gone, they were forced to put them to sleep as it was the “kindest thing to do” to end their suffering. Turner pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to two ponies at Bradford Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday (Nov 24).

She was sentenced to a 12-month community order for 250 hours of unpaid work, costs of £300 and a victim surcharge of £85. Turner was also banned from owning equines for 10 years and she cannot appeal to have her ban lifted for three years.

In mitigation, Turner said she was struggling with financial difficulties and had entered an early guilty plea.

RSPCA inspector Kris Walker, who investigated, said: “A piebald cob type mare named Blue appeared in an emaciated condition with her spine, pelvis and ribs all visible.

“Blue had collapsed on arrival and had given birth to a premature foal but had now managed to get to her feet with assistance from the vet and members of the public.

“The stables were dirty and there was rubbish and hazards covering most of the area. “Another horse, a piebald cob type mare called Willow was found collapsed in a stable to the right of the yard and was also in poor body condition.

“It was distressing to see these two horses in such a poor state.

“They were taken to a boarding yard but sadly their condition worsened and it was decided that the kindest thing to do was to put them to sleep to end their suffering. “This was a sad case with a tragic outcome resulting in the death of two ponies.”