#TheList Stan Strelley and wife Heather Strelley, both born c. 1978, of 34 Bron, Gwendraeth, Kidwelly SA17 4HT – failed to meet the needs of 35 ponies and caused them to suffer
RSPCA Cymru were shocked to find the ponies with overgrown hooves, cuts and scrapes to their bodies and surrounded by broken glass, brick, metal and old machinery on their land.
Banging noises could be heard at the site – and rescuers soon found a collapsed shed with ponies trying to push their way through the fallen metal roof.
Three distressed ponies inside did not have room to stand up without hitting themselves and they were forced to crouch causing their legs to buckle.
Conditions at the shed were so bad that the building was bursting at the seams with soiled faeces and had nails protruding from the walls.
Shockingly, the bones of a deceased pony were found on a muck heap nearby.
A further 20 ponies were discovered in a separate building – almost all of which were living in horrific conditions.
Part of the building’s roof was collapsing, and the ponies were living on many feet of faeces.
Some three ponies were found to be underweight, six were lame, and a further three were trapped in a collapsed shed.
An investigating RSPCA inspector has said the case amounted to ‘shocking neglect of a large number of animals’.
RSPCA inspector Keith Hogben said: ‘I will never forget the sound of hearing a pony trying to bang his way out of a collapsed shed.
‘It was an horrific discovery – with three ponies trapped beneath fallen metal roofing sheets, in conditions so horrendous I was left cold. They were desperate to get out, but had no way out before we arrived.
It was confirmed in court that both individuals kept showing showing ponies – and, indeed, some were found at the site groomed and in far better condition that other ponies.
The judge labelled the overall conditions at the site ‘disgraceful’ and ‘disgusting’.
Twenty-two of the ponies were signed into the care of the RSPCA – with the other 13 remaining at the property, but moved away from the poor environment in which they had been forced to live.
The pair now have 28 days to make arrangements for the ponies still in their care.
Mr Hogben said: ‘This complex investigation found shocking neglect of a large number of animals – with ponies kept in hugely inappropriate conditions; and many left to suffer with serious weight loss or lameness.
‘Remarkably, both individuals were showing ponies – and continued to do so during our investigations.
‘There was a clear priorities problem – with some animals groomed and treated far better; while others were left in appalling conditions. It was one rule for some – and another rule for the others.
‘It is so hard to understand how anyone lets conditions get so bad for their animals.’
Stan Strelley – 16 weeks in jail, suspended for a year; a total of £415 costs and charges; 190 hours of unpaid community work and 25 rehabilitation activity requirement days
Heather Strelley – 12 weeks, suspended for a year; a total of £415 costs and charges. 25 rehabilitation activity requirement days.
Both were banned from keeping ponies and horses for five years – and cannot appeal this ban for a period of one year.