World Horse Welfare Shetland pony Sweep has helped to rehome a horse called Silky who was brought into one of the centres as a foal in an extremely poor condition.
Silky arrived at the Belwade Rescue and Rehoming Centre in Aboyne in January last year with her dam Rona. Both were exceptionally underweight, riddled with worms and covered in lice and rain scald.
To give both Rona and Silky a chance of survival, Silky was gradually weaned from her mum and slowly introduced to Sweep to keep her company. Unfortunately, after battling for two weeks Rona lost the ability to get up even with the help of staff at Belwade Farm. She was therefore put to sleep and a post mortem examination found that she was so infested with worms that the gut was badly damaged meaning she was unable to absorb the necessary nutrients and was consequently starving to death.
Silky, however, responded well to treatment and made firm friends with Sweep. In the space of less than six months Silky more than doubled in size and quickly grew in confidence. Silky was successfully rehomed as a youngster to a family in January.
Sweep had previously been called into action to help another rescue horse called Polly in 2010. Polly arrived at Belwade riddled with worms which had caused colic, and she had a nasty injury to one of her hind legs. Sweep once again befriended Polly and became an important ally as she restored Polly’s confidence and helped to give her the will to live while she was receiving treatment.