The three-year ban on keeping equines imposed on a Lanarkshire woman for neglecting 19 ponies and donkeys has disappointed the Scottish SPCA.
The charity believed a life ban would have been appropriate in the case, which it described as horrendous.
Kathryn Brady, 35, of South Grey Stone Farm, Lesmahagow, had previously pleaded guilty to two charges of causing unnecessary suffering by failing to provide veterinary treatment and one charge of abandonment and failing to make adequate provisions for 10 Shetland ponies, two cob-type ponies and seven donkeys.
She was sentenced at Hamilton Sheriff Court on Wednesday and given 170 hours community service, as well as the three-year ban on keeping equines.
The case began when the charity was alerted to her animals in rented fields at High Kype Road, Strathaven.
Scottish SPCA Chief Superintendent Mike Flynn said: “We are extremely disappointed with the sentence imposed, as we believe a life ban on keeping animals would have been entirely appropriate for a case as horrendous as this.
“One young female donkey in particular was collapsed and in an advanced state of suffering.
“Her head collar was so tight that it was growing into her head, cutting into the flesh around her nose and behind her ears and penetrating to the bone in two areas.
“There were also maggots feeding off the dead tissue.
“It would have taken weeks for her collar to become so embedded and there is no doubt that she was caused a great deal of pain and distress as a result of Brady’s neglect.
“Sadly, her suffering was so severe that the accompanying vet had to put her to sleep immediately.
“We also found a cob-type pony with deep lacerations to his forelegs which were open and weeping and he was lame on his front right leg.
“The vet who examined him said these injuries were five to seven days old and should have received immediate veterinary attention.
“Thankfully, after prolonged rehabilitation, this pony recovered in our care and was found a loving new home.”