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Stolen horses are back safe after our appeal

HORSES snatched from a Dublin animal shelter have been found safe and well following a Herald appeal.

A miniature horse, a pony and a donkey were all taken from the Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) shelter in Rathfarnham over the weekend in what was believed to be a planned abduction.

A female donkey, Hayley, along with Kerry, a white and brown Kerry Bog Pony, and Napoleon, a black and white Falabella stallion, all disappeared on Saturday night.

But observant Herald readers recognised them and contacted the DSPCA. Earlier this week, we revealed how baby foal Swayze was in a distressed state after his mum, Hayley, was snatched from her pen.

DSPCA representative Orla Aungier said it appeared the abduction was a carefully thought- out operation. "It was clearly a planned attack," said Orla.

"They had wire-cutting equipment and saws and they would have needed a horsebox in order to take them."

Staff said that baby donkey Swayze was desperately missing his mum over the week. But there was a happy conclusion when the three animals were located in separate areas in Tallaght.

Council workers spotted Hayley and Kerry wandering on to the Luas track by "complete fluke" and recognised them as DSPCA animals from the Herald article.

And an observant Herald reader came to Napoleon's rescue.

"A gentleman saw the piece in the Herald, recognised the stallion from the photograph and minded him for hours," said Orla.

Staff have managed to get all of the animals back to the shelter in the Dublin mountains. And although they had some minor ailments, a vet said they were in good health.