“Sick” horse attackers likely drug-addled deer poachers, owners told

Owner Courtney Laskey comforts her beloved 30-year-old horse, Gemma, recovering from a malicious attack last week. Picture: PHILLIP BIGGS

Owner Courtney Laskey comforts her beloved 30-year-old horse, Gemma, recovering from a malicious attack last week. Picture: PHILLIP BIGGS

‘‘SICK individuals’’ are likely to blame for injuries inflicted on a thoroughbred in Northern Tasmania that have left veterinarians baffled, owners say.

Courtney Laskey and mum Donna remain horrified and upset about injuries caused to their 30-year-old retired show horse Gemma last week.

It is believed that Gemma was subject to a malicious attack whereby an unknown object was inserted into her private parts — causing significant internal and external damage.

The attack, subject to a police investigation, is understood to have occurred on Wednesday or Thursday.

‘‘Mum came out to the property  and couldn’t find her but didn’t think anything of it because it is a big property and she just roams around,’’  Courtney  said.

‘‘Then we came back on Thursday evening to ride my other horses and still couldn’t find her, which was very unusual. Mum went looking for her and found her locked over the back into a little paddock.

‘‘Everything looked OK, but when I was feeding them I noticed a lot of blood coming down her leg — there was blood everywhere and huge wounds.

‘‘There are cuts, massive lacerations on both sides and inside her ... the first vet had to call another one because he had never seen anything like it.’’

Police confirmed on Saturday that the Launceston Criminal Investigation Branch was investigating the case, with a spokesman saying: ‘‘Police take any animal cruelty matter seriously’’.

Courtney said the veterinarians had determined that Gemma’s injuries could not have been self-inflicted or inflicted by another animal.

The injuries are now being left to heal naturally.

Donna said police had told them it was likely to have been the act of people poaching deer while under the influence of drugs.

‘‘There are some sick individuals out there,’’ Donna said.

Courtney’s plea on social media has generated outcry, with people condemning the actions of those responsible.

‘‘She was my first competition horse –  I got her when I was about 10 years old,’’ Courtney said.

‘‘I am absolutely disgusted that someone could do something so awful to such a defenceless, sweet animal.

‘‘So my message, my warning to friends and friends of friends, is look after your animals, children and yourselves: there is some serious scum in this world.’’

Anyone with information is asked to contact Launceston CIB on 131 000  or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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