Horse seized amid welfare concerns
ANIMAL lovers have complained to the RSPCA about the treatment of a horse seized by Lismore City Council after it was found wandering on somebody else's property at Rosebank.
The horse was picked up by the council ranger on Sunday and taken to the Lismore Saleyards where it was impounded.
The concerned people said the stallion was frequently left tied to a tree on an unfenced property.
The people have taken many photographs of the horse tied up.
The Northern Star was yesterday unable to contact the owner of the horse, but the RSPCA has inspected the horse and said it was in good health.
RSPCA chief inspector David O'Shannessy said the RSPCA had investigated a number of complaints about the treatment of horses by the owner of the stallion.
"Complaints of alleged cruelty have been made. As yet, no offences have been identified and no charges have been laid," Mr O'Shannessy said.
He said only the courts had the jurisdiction to make a prohibition order which would prevent the owner from reclaiming his horse.
Mr O'Shannessy said anyone who suspected an animal was being mistreated should report the matter to the police or the RSPCA.
The council said it was aware the RSPCA had inspected the horse and that it held no concerns about its general condition.
"Council is not aware of any reasons, under the Impounding Act, for the horse not to be released to the owner when and if the necessary fees and charges are paid," a council representative said.
"If the owner does not contact council and make arrangement to pay the fees and charges within seven days, the horse can be sold at public auction."
It is understood the owner of the horse paid the impoundment fees yesterday afternoon.
Animal rights and rescue founder Barbara Steffensen said she hoped to rescue the horse if it had gone to auction.