Piltdown charity launches appeal to save sick horse

Samson the horse
Samson the horse

A Piltdown animal charity is appealing for help to save the life of a horse suffering from a rare and painful tumor.

The Wealden Horse Rescue Centre says it needs to raise funds to help treat Samson, a large cob type horse in its care which suffers from a trichoblastoma tumour.

Despite daily cleaning and treatment of his wound the tumour causes Samson, who is also known as Sammy, constant pain and runs the risk of serious infection. The family-run charity says its only options are to either remove as much of the tumour as possible with a veterinary operation and continue treatment, or to have Samson put to sleep.

Vanessa De Sutton, who runs the charity with her father, says they need to raise £2,000 for the operation. She said: "Samson is a kind, gentle, horse with a super personality who has spent many previous years teaching disabled children and adults to ride. We really feel that he deserves a happy retirement and that he should be able to enjoy this without any pain or suffering from something which could be treated with the right approach and care.

"He worked many years of his life teaching disabled children to ride, and is otherwise in good health, and we are heartbroken at the prospect of not being able to repay his kindness and good nature by giving it our best shot at resolving his ongoing tumour issue, but we just don't have the sort of money which is required for the surgery.

"We never give up on an animal until all avenues have been exhausted, and our only barrier on this occasion is funding as we simply do not have the money available to be able to carry out the necessary treatment."

In hopes of saving Samson the charity, which cannot says it afford the procedure itself, has written to several animal trusts asking for funding. After getting no response it has set up a GoFundMe page to raise the money for the operation, which has so far raised almost £200 of the money needed.

Vanessa said: "If we are not able to raise the funds and have the operation carried out by January/February 2017 at the latest, then we will have to seriously consider having him put to sleep as it is not fair to expect him to continue with the constant pain and aggravation that this causes him.

"If we are able to raise the funds, then the money will be spent on: the actual surgery first and foremost, transport costs to get him to the clinic and back as we don't have a vehicle big enough, specialist bandaging, specialist topical dressings and therapy, and his ongoing treatment as an outpatient for the duration following his operation - he is going to be on box rest for at least four months, with the wound being bandaged for at least that long.

"We ideally need to carry this out by January 2017 at the latest as poor Samson is suffering and we do not want to delay any longer than is absolutely necessary. Also, it is far preferable to have this carried out during the winter months when we do not have the added problems with flies.

"We just cannot tell you how much it would mean to us - and more importantly to Samson - to see this longstanding and painful issue be successfully resolved."

For more information about the charity visit www.wealdenhorserescuecentre.co.uk.

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