ANIMAL SANCTUARY found with over 100 malnourished and suffering horses after the sanctuary owner “bit off more than she could chew”.
Sandra Jane Kaverneng-Stolp set up and ran the Whispering Willows Equine Rescue Centre with good intentions after she inherited some money, but the 54-year-old soon found herself in over her head and her dream of caring for the horses ended in disaster for the poor animals.
130 horses had to be rescued from the sanctuary, and many were found to be malnourished and in poor health. Many of the horses had suffered to the point where they sadly had to be euthanized.
The court heard how Kaverneng-Stolp did not have sufficient experience to give the horses the care that they needed and had been reluctant to listen to advice.
Jon Tarrant, prosecutor told the court how, “there has not been a deliberate act to this offending, but something where she lost control in the circumstances.”
He also explained that, “this is a case of well intentioned but incompetent care. A number of horses had to be euthanised. The aggravating features are that this was a sanctuary, where horses were being held on behalf of owners in cases where they could not be looked after. There is also a case where professional advice was ignored.
“It cost the RSPCA and other charity organisations £130,000 to get these matters resolved, so there is financial implications of this well intended, but incompetent care.”
Kaverneng-Stolp has now been banned from keeping equine animals for 10 years and has been given community service with the condition that she stays indoors overnight.
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