A woman who left a starving horse to suffer has been banned from keeping horses for ten years.

Katrianna Jade Rich (date of birth: 04/05/1994), of Lower Peasedown, Peasdown St John, Somerset, appeared before Bath Magistrates Court today (Wednesday, 9th August).

She was sentenced following an investigation and prosecution by the RSPCA after pleading guilty to animal welfare offences at an earlier hearing.

The court heard how Rich, who ran a small holding with a number of horses, sheep and goats, was visited by RSPCA Inspector Daniel Hatfield and a field officer from World Horse Welfare on February 9, 2023 after welfare concerns were raised.

While there, they discovered Murphy, who despite being covered with three rugs, was in visibly poor condition.

Murphy at the time of his rescue

Inspector Hatfield, who investigated for the animal welfare charity, said: “I could still easily see his hip bones sticking through the rugs, appearing in really poor body condition and once the rugs were removed you could see just how poor bodily condition he was in – you could see his ribs, hips and spine easily and he stood there with his head stooped down looking extremely depressed and you could see the dips in the side of his head.”

A vet was called to examine Murphy, who was found to be emaciated with a body condition score of just 0.5 out of 5. He also had poor feet with overgrown hooves which were impacted with debris, including embedded stones, and poor dental health, including a fractured tooth.

He was certified as suffering by the vet and was taken into possession by police and passed into the care of the RSPCA.

Further tests found he had a high worm burden but showed nothing abnormal to account for the poor body condition, aside from prolonged starvation.

Murphy gained weight once in the care of the RSPCA by simply being given a normal diet. Photographs, taken just weeks later on March 29th, show how different he looks after spending time in the care of the charity.

Murphy is making a full recovery in RSPCA care.

Alongside the disqualification, which she can not appeal for ten years, Rich was also ordered to carry out a nine week curfew and pay £400 costs.