Submitted by GSPCA on 09:55, 22nd Feb, 2013 | 0

The GSPCA has recently received a large number of calls from concerned members of public about horses and other animals in wet and muddy fields.

Unfortunately due to the very wet winter we have all had to endure here in Guernsey the GSPCA Welfare and Education Officer has had a number of animals that have been reported to the GSPCA.

Emma Trousdale GSPCA Welfare and Education Officer said ‘With such a wet winter many animals have been affected both wild and domestic.’

‘We have had quite a few calls from concerned members of public about outdoor animals and their conditions.’

‘If anyone is concerned about an animal’s condition then they can call us on 01481 257261 and we will look into it but we have placed a little advice to help horse and pony owners on our web site and a link to other winter advice.’

Lorna Prince GSPCA Welfare Manager said ‘It has been such a wet winter we are aware that many livestock, horse, pony and donkey owners are facing challenging times.’

‘In muddy conditions it is important that a horse has an adequately sized, well-drained area in the pasture on which to stand and lie down, and on which to be fed and watered.’

‘Not only are we concerned about the animals out in this awful weather but we do sympathise with the owners and we are here if any advice is needed.’

‘With the cold drawing in again we are also reminding owners of horses, ponies and donkeys what you can do to help your animals.’

The wet winter has proved a challenge for horses, ponies and their owners. Animals that live outside must cope with everything the weather can throw at them, and owners must ensure that the extra care and attention is given to these animals.

You may be surprised at how well horses can adapt to colder weather. Although horses have been domesticated for over 6000 years in the wild, horses can withstand temperatures at well below zero. However, there are a number of things that you can do to maximize your horse's health and condition during the colder months

With short days and cold long evenings and wet weather you have to think about the following -

  • Has your field got natural or adequate shelter and space?
  • Does your horse have company and/or enough of your time?
  • Have you got a good supply of extra feed for the cold month?
  • Are you registered with a local veterinary practice and farrier?
  • Do you know what your donkeys, ponies or horse's normal behaviour is like and the animals health?

You need to ensure a good working routine. Work out how you will manage to care for your horse in these very wet cold months and make sure you can fit your horse's care into your day or you have someone to help assist you.

If you are cannot devote more time to your horse's care during the winter wet months, consider keeping your horse at full livery, where there is adequate winter turnout and a high standard of daily care.

In muddy conditions it is important to provide adequately sized, well-drained area where possible or  look at other alternatives.

Short days add to the complication of winter care. Make your first visit to your horse each day as early in the morning as you can. If there is a problem, you can call for assistance in daylight.

There are a real variety of different rugs on the market to suit all types of donkeys, horses and ponies. Rain sheets are also available to offer a protection from wind or rain and there are thicker rugs also available and it is best to ensure you use the right rug for your animal(s).

If you plan to ride your horse in winter, beware of getting your horse sweated up in the afternoon as horses can easily catch a chill.  Also ensure that you and your horse have appropriate clothing to ensure that you are able to clearly be seen.

Make arrangements with an experienced person to take care of your horse in the event of an emergency, for example if you are ill, delayed or cut off by bad weather.  A starting place could be one of the local groups or clubs who will have a network of experienced owners.

More than anything you MUST remember that your horse needs you.

If you need further advice you can call the GSPCA on 01481 257261

For more information on animal winter advice please go to


If you would like to donate to the GSPCA and help us care for animals in Guernsey, you can do so by calling into the Shelter, over the phone on 01481 257261 or by clicking the Paypal button below.

To see the story of Jethou Bumblebee the grey seal pup please check out this short video from start to finish on how staff rescued him with a lot of help.

To see the story of Hanois and his rescue please go to

Petplan & ADCH Animal Charity Awards 2013 - Find out how to nominate here by going to

Petplan & ADCH Animal Welfare Awards 2013

To nominate an amazing animal, a special person (in secret!) who has dedicated time to them or any inspirational animal story for the The British Animal Honours 2013, then please go to

There are always animals at the GSPCA looking for good homes from farm birds to rabbits and to see many of them please click here. Felix in the video is our longest stay cat and really needs your help to find a new home.

There are many items on the GSPCA's Wish List and you can see many of them by clicking here including a list of Amazon items which would make a difference to animals in Guernsey.

To download our latest newsletter or become a member of the GSPCA please

To become a GSPCA member

The following are events planned for 2013

Every Tuesday during term time between 10.30am and 12pm at the GSPCA we have a coffee morning with bric-a-brac and pet supplies on sale.  Please click here for more details

The GSPCA are pleased to announce our GSPCA Sunday Family Fun Lunch on the 3rd March - click here for more details

Saturday Bric-a-brac sale, coffee morning and guided tours at the GSPCA Animal Shelter 9th March - click here for more details

Clinton's Kilimanjaro Climb in March - One man VS 5,895 m - to find out more please click here for more details

25th - 31st March GSPCA Cupcake Week - please click here for more details

4th April - World Stray Day - more details to follow

Saturday 8th June 2013 Itex Walk Guernsey - We are pleased that for 2013 we are one of the nominated charities benefiting from this years walk. To register and find out more click here for more details.

June 2013 - Summer Fayre and Dog Show - more details to follow

Sunday 15th September 2013 - Animal Welfare Seafront Sunday - click here for more details.

4th October - World Animal Day - more details to follow


Fancy doing a sponsored event for the GSPCA?  To download a GSPCA Sponsor form please

Download a GSPCA Sponsorship Form


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