Bristol woman sentenced over Shebbear ponies neglected

The owner of three ponies, one of which starved to death, has been detained for animal cruelty.

Chelsea Jenkins, 20, from Gilda Close, in Whitchurch, Bristol, left two colts and a mare in stables at Shebbear, in North Devon, when she moved to the city last year.

Jenkins was convicted of five charges under the Animal Welfare Act.

She was sentenced to three months in a young offenders institute and has been banned from keeping animals for life.

North Devon Magistrates' Court heard one pony had starved to death, another was so emaciated it had to be destroyed and a third was left severely malnourished.

John Wyatt, prosecuting for the RSPCA, said Jenkins did not contact anyone about the animals until four days after leaving Devon.

He said Jenkins called a neighbour asking him to look after the animals and told him she would return - but never did.

Sixteen days after she left, the man alerted the RSPCA, the court heard.

Vet Paul Jarvis said: "The ponies were shut in behind a large metal door.

"Inside there was a pile of old feed bags and haylage, which was mouldy.

"The second stable had a colt standing over a dead colt.

"It was in an emaciated condition and when not nuzzling its dead stablemate, [it] was searching the floor for food."

Zara Svensson, defending, said Jenkins accepted responsibility for the animals as their owner but claimed she had made arrangements for them to be looked after as she moved to Bristol.

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