A HORSE welfare charity has put out an appeal for aid in the wake of a five-month-old foal being callously abandoned by the side of a road.

The colt foal was taken in by SAFE (Saving Abandoned Fly-Grazing Equines) after it was seen being dumped out of the back of a van in the Basingstoke area last month.

The foal, called Marty, prompted SAFE, which operates in Hampshire, Berkshire and Surrey, to launch an online funding page to help pay for his care.

Alison Stratford, the founder of the charity, said: “He had just been taken from his mum and dumped. He was obviously pretty traumatised.

“It is very sad, but this is a quite common thing we see now with this type of horse which are being bred indiscriminately to try to find the ideal stallion. Obviously this one was not seen to be making the grade, so it was dumped.”

The online fundraiser has so far exceeded its £2,000 target mark, but Alison is urging more people to lend a helping hand.

She said: “To get a horse back to a healthy state and ready to be homed costs thousands of pounds, for each horse. As they have to have so much treatment, plus the right food and right care.

“We get their horse passport, their dental care, they need a lot of treatment for their feet.

“And then we keep an eye on them once they have been rehomed as well, to ensure they are being kept looked after.

“So while we have reached the target for Marty, there are so many more horses which will need help.”

Marty, meanwhile, is on the road to recovery and is due to be taken in by one of SAFE’s fosterers this weekend, where he will be with a couple of other abandoned foals of his age, before a forever home is found for him.

The charity works with around 100 abandoned horses every year.

To donate, go to gofundme.com/help-safe-rescue-a-dumped-filly.

For more information about the work of the charity, go to safe-horses.co.uk.