Vast majority of 2,000 horses seized by authorities last year were put down
'We had a case of a pony being swapped for a mobile phone'
Some 1,741 horses were euthanised by local Co. Councils in 2016, according to recent figures published by the Department of Agriculture.
The figures show that some 2,125 horses were seized by Co. Councils over the course of 2016 with 227 re-homed and 101 reclaimed by owners.
Dublin councils recorded the highest levels of seizures with South Dublin County Council, Fingal, Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown and Dublin City Council seizing 649 between them and it put down 598 horses in 2016.
Limerick, Tipperary and Kildare also saw high levels of horse seizures in 2016, each recording over 120 seizures each last year.
Commenting on the figures a spokesperson for the Dublin Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) said the charity is concerned about the large number of reports they are still receiving from the public about stray/abandoned horses in Dublin and Ireland.
It called on horse owners to comply with the legislation surrounding the ownership and grazing of horses.
Earlier this year Martina Kenny, co-founder of the charity, My Lovely Horse Rescue highlighted the issue and said the solution involved educating people.
“In so many rescue cases involving horses, the Gardaí don’t actually know what they can or cannot do,” Martina added.