#TheList Lee S Roberts, born c. 1972, and wife Sarah Roberts, born 23/11/1978, both of Huntington Terrace Road, Cannock WS11 5HA – starved their horse and attempted to hide her suffering
Following an RSPCA investigation, Lee and Sarah Roberts pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to the bay mare, named Lady.
The animal welfare charity were tipped off to Lady’s situation after she was found collapsed by a member of the public at a stables off Stafford Road.
Lady was discovered to be in an emaciated state, having been starved for weeks, and had to be put down to end her suffering.
The seriousness of Lady’s starvation was not immediately apparent to the RSPCA inspector, Rob Crutchley, as she was wearing a rug.
Inspector Crutchley, who investigated, said: “We were called by a concerned member of the public after they saw the horse had collapsed at stables in Stafford Road, in Cannock.
“When I got there, she was wearing a rug so it wasn’t immediately obvious how emaciated she was. When I lifted the rug up I could tell that she had been starved – she was in such a state.
“A vet came out and they were very concerned as Lady was clearly very weak. She was given a body score of just 0.5 out of five and was very emaciated.
“Sadly, the vet made the decision that the kindest thing to do was to put her to sleep to end her suffering. Lady had been starved so much that by the time someone raised the alarm, she was beyond help.”
Lady’s body was sent away for a post-mortem examination, which showed that she had poor nutrition in her gut.
“There was no grazing for her in the field at all,” added Inspector Crutchley. “The vet believed Lady had been starved for weeks.
“If it hadn’t been for her wearing the rug, we might have been called earlier – the rug was essentially hiding her suffering.”
Sentencing: ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work each and to each pay costs of £250. Banned from keeping equines for 10 years (expires October 2027).