Native pony Icky had lived at Redwings’ Caldecott Visitor Centre, near Great Yarmouth in Norfolk, since 1999.
Before arriving at Redwings in 1991, this gentle chap was a registered spotted pony – whose official name was Haw Idris – yet despite his sought-after status, this was sadly not enough to prevent him from being neglected.
Icky was rescued from a horse sale having been destined for slaughter. He was discovered extremely thin, with a severe worm burden and was terrified of people.
But thanks to specialist and sympathetic behaviour training from his new carers at Redwings, Icky soon overcame his fears. His friendly and loving manner (and famous strawberry blonde beard and tail) made him a huge hit with visitors to the Sanctuary, and he quickly became a Redwings Adoption Star!
Sadly, since the start of 2018, Icky had been living at the charity’s Horse Hospital after his carers at Redwings Caldecott noticed he was struggling to maintain his weight.
Redwings’ vets discovered that Icky had some issues with his small intestine that meant he was unable to absorb glucose and nutrients efficiently. More recently, he had begun to suffer recurring bouts of colic, linked to the problems with his intestines.
Unfortunately, his overall condition took a sudden downturn last month, leading to the heart-breaking decision to put him to sleep to ensure he did not suffer any further and he passed away on Friday 27th July.
Lynn Cutress, Redwings’ Chief Executive, said: “We’re terribly sad to lose Icky who has been such a wonderful ambassador for Redwings. He was adored by his carers and supporters – some of whom had been sponsoring and visiting him year in, year out for over 20 years. In fact, when Icky had to spend his 30th birthday in our Horse Hospital earlier this year, he received so many get well cards we almost ran out of space to put them up in his stable!”
Lynn added: “Despite being a registered spotty pony, this wasn’t enough to stop Icky from being neglected when he was young, which shows that cruelty can happen to any horse or donkey in spite of their desirability. As one of our longest-serving Adoption Stars, Icky helped to raise thousands of pounds in sponsorship for himself and his companions at the Sanctuary, giving even more neglected ponies, like he was once, the chance to start a new and happy life. What a fantastic legacy to leave! Thank you Icky – we’ll never forget you.”
A memorial fund has been set-up in Icky’s name to help raise money towards the 1,500 rescued horses, ponies, donkeys and mules being cared for by Redwings nationwide every day.
For more information and to make a donation in Icky’s name, call 01508 481000 or visit www.redwings.org.uk/donating