We would like the Council to remove the licence of a farrier (Mark Wellfair) who deliberately used his skills to injure horses in a petty act of revenge.
Mr Wellfair has received a 3 month ban, for a deliberate act that has left 2 horses lame - one permanently injured.
If he were a doctor or a vet he would never be allowed to practice again; the below signed feel that this would be an appropriate course of action in this case too.
We feel that a 3 month ban is an insult to the horses and their owner, and will pose little more than an inconvenience to Mr. Wellfair.
We are sure that the Farriers Regestration Council would like to think that his clients are free to leave him if they do not trust his work in light of this event, but would ask that the council to consider the following: Given Mr Wellfair's appetite for revenge, would you dare sack him if he was fairer to your horses.
We feel that such leniency on the part of the Council is unacceptable, and it throws the entire registry into disrepute - rather than being a list of ethical professionals who can be trusted with horses feet, it currently appears to be a list of random names of trained people who may or may not be cruel and sadistic.
There follows the full text of a report of the incident from the Horse and Hound.
Two horses deliberately lamed by farrier
Charlotte White, H&H deputy news editor
11 June, 2012
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The owner of two horses deliberately lamed by her former farrier has blasted the Farriers Registration Council (FRC) for not barring him from shoeing horses again.
Mark Wellfair of Bentham, Glos, was handed a three-month ban, running until 23 August, by the FRC’s disciplinary committee on 24 April.
He was convicted of criminal damage to Cassandra Price’s horses on 21 July 2011 at Cheltenham Magistrates Court.
The court conditionally discharged him and ordered him to pay £220.80 compensation with £85 costs.
“I feel completely let down by the system,” said Miss Price. “The cruelty he caused to my horses was horrendous.”
Wellfair shod Miss Price’s horses for five years before she changed farriers in January 2011.
On 7 and 23 February 2011, Wellfair went into Miss Price’s field and pulled a shoe off first her five-year-old eventer Coolagadden Clover (known as Eric) and, on the second occasion, her advanced eventer Arron Carneval Hill II (Arron).
The shoes were pulled off with pliers and the hoof cut back, with large amounts of the hoof wall removed. In Arron’s case, the lamini were revealed, causing the hoof to bleed.
Both horses needed remedial farriery and Arron will always need stick-on shoes.
A vet told the hearing that it would have caused both horses pain and unnecessary suffering.
“Mark told the FRC he wanted to cause me inconvenience,” said Miss Price, “but the suffering he caused to my horses was absolutely disgusting.
“They trusted him because he had been their farrier.”
She said she felt disappointed that the police had prosecuted Wellfair for criminal damage rather than animal cruelty and that the FRC had not banned him for life.
A spokesman for the FRC said: “A three-month suspension is relatively rare and is a serious finding, which the committee considered was fair — taking into account the recovery time for the horses, the impact on the profession and that Mr Wellfair fully admitted the charges and showed remorse for his actions.”
She added that if the committee had felt Wellfair was indifferent to the suffering he caused the horses, it would have barred him from working again.
Wellfair could not be reached by H&H for comment.