A HORSE sanctuary is pleading for help after facing an influx of neglected and injured animals.

Essex Horse and Pony Protection Society in Pitsea Hall Lane, Pitsea, says more and more young horses are injured after being forced to pull traps and carts.

In the latest incident, a two-year-old colt – now called Springer – was found badly underweight with a severe chest infection and scars all over its body, near Baker Street, Orsett.

Sue Allery, who runs the sanctuary, said the scars indicated he had been pulling carts.

She said: “A horse should really be three before it can pull carts.

“Springer was terrified of people, had serious chest injuries which were infected, scars all over his body, was underweight and had badly neglected feet.

“Springer owes his life to the people who managed to get this extremely nervous and frightened horse off the road and to a place of safety until we could arrange to collect him.”

She said staff at the sanctuary were app-alled by the lack of care some horses in south Essex had to endure. She added: “Some people subject these kind and intelligent animals to inexplicable atrocities.

“Horses of less than two are forced to pull carts and race, all in the name of greed.”

The sanctuary has recieved six injured animals this month, which it suspects had been pulling carts despite being as young as seven or eight months.

It usually receives just one or two injured horses a month.

To donate to the charity, call 01268 584603.