This morning I woke drowsily to Radio 4s Farming Programme. I love horses, so my attention was immediately caught by a discussion about the feasibility of injecting a contraceptive into Dartmoor mares to prevent them from foaling.
In the old days people could be relied upon to buy young ponies for their children to ride. Due the recession, all those computer games and hours spent on Facebook, that’s yesterday’s fad. However, since mares and stallions naturally do what they do, the numbers of these gorgeous creatures are out of control, with the result that up to a thousand unsold ponies have been reportedly shot over the past two years.
I used to own a horse. The thought of looking one in the eye, and then shooting it is for me horrendous. Then again, we human beings have been culling animals for hundreds of years in order to maintain command over our environment.