Police in Scotland Investigating Horse Mutilations

While owners keep a close eye on the horses in their pastures, police in Scotland are investigating a series of attacks that have resulted in the mutilation of five horses. One horse was euthanized as a result of its injuries.

According to a Central Scotland Police press release, three horses stabled at different locations in the Bonnybridge area received cuts to their bodies, legs, and genitals in separate attacks between May 30 and June 6.

"We have discovered that a fourth horse was destroyed by its owners after receiving similar injuries, which was not reported to us at the time," Denney Police station Inspector Paul Fleming said in the June 9 statement.

Because the attacker would have had to get very close to the horses to create the wounds, police said they suspect they either befriended the horses prior to injuring them, or had horse-handling experience.

"The person who has done this is obviously comfortable around horses," Fleming noted.

Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals spokesperson Doreen Graham declined to comment on the incidents.

Meanwhile, police in the nearby town of Strathclyde are investigating a June 9 incident involving a similarly injured horse. However police have not yet determined if the incident is connected to the others.

"An examination of the horse was carried out by a vet, and we can't say for definite whether there was anything suspicious, or if the horse was slit by someone," said Strathclyde Police Media Relations Officer Lynne Hughes said. "We still can't rule out that the horse injured itself."

As the investigations continue, police have increased patrols in areas where the attacks took place, and are encouraging horse owners to establish "Horse Watches" in their communities.

"(People at) farms in the area have been asked to keep a lookout for anything suspicious," said Hughes. "It's just another part of the investigation."

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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