MORE than 170 horses were involved in welfare incidents in Hampshire during lockdown.

The RSPCA received 173 welfare calls regarding horses across Hampshire sparking fears a recession will bring a "welfare catastrophe".

As the microchipping of horses becomes compulsory in England this month, the RSPCA fears it will not be enough to prevent an impending horse welfare catastrophe.

New Forest Post:

As the charity launches its month-long rehoming drive, Adoptober, it reveals that nationally the number of horses in its care is already three times what it was at the start of the last recession in 2009, and said it is braced for huge numbers of abandoned and neglected horses as the country plunges into an even deeper financial downturn.

During the lockdown period of March 23 to September 8 alone, the RSPCA dealt with 4,479 incidents involving horses.

Last year the charity rehomed 242 horses, but almost 760 remain in the charity’s care to date, desperately needing new homes.

The RSPCA is expecting more horses to be abandoned or neglected as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic and the deepening recession and is urging people who are looking to take on a horse to think about adopting one from the charity.

New Forest Post:

The charity is currently look for a loving home for four-year-old Welsh pony Poppet, who is currently at the RSPCA Millbrook Animal Centre in Southampton.

Poppet was born in RSPCA care in 2016 after her mum was rescued by RSPCA Inspectors.

She is a sweet natured little mare who we think would make a lovely family pony as once she loves you she will do anything for you. She is looking for an experienced home where she can settle in and get to know her surroundings before she starts any ridden work.

Also in the Millbrook centre is one-year-old Piebald Cob gelding Jerry.

Jerry is a super sweet piebald yearling, cob, gelding. Jerry is good to catch, groom, lead and have his feet picked out.

He was rescued from Suffolk after being abandoned in a field earlier this year. He has so far proved to be a very straight forward young pony.