A woman who starved one of her horses to death has been banned from keeping the animals for six years.
Jessica Coffey, of Weaverham, Northwich, admitted three charges under the Animal Welfare Act after she left two-year-old cob Texas so weak and emaciated he had to be put to sleep.
He collapsed in a horse box while being rushed for emergency treatment and staff had to carry him from the muddy and inadequate field on Brimstage Road in Heswall where he was being kept, reports Liverpool Echo.
Texas, who also had a prolapsed penis which had become badly infected, was given a plasma treatment and other medication but his condition deteriorated and he had to be put to sleep.
Another horse, Spice, was kept in the same conditions but was in a better condition and is recovering at a horse welfare centre, Wirral Magistrates Court heard.
Wirral RSPCA Inspector Anthony Joynes, who was alerted to the condition of the horses by a concerned member of the public on January 2 this year, said: "When I attended Texas was wearing a rug, which was hiding his poor body condition, but even with that one I could see immediately he was emaciated.
"This penis was prolapsed and there was obviously a problem there. I could see it was sore and swollen and it got in that terrible state due to his starvation."
The field Texas and Spice were kept in was muddy, there was no grass or natural shelter and nowhere for the horses to lie down and rest.
Inspector Joynes said: "When I took his rug off I just stood there in shock at how underweight and lethargic he was - it really saddened me.
"Spice was a more hardy breed and his weight was much better although the conditions he was kept in were not.
"We really did try everything to try and help him pull through and it is so sad that he did not make it as he was such a lovely boy."
Inspector Joynes said the horse's death was an 'appalling failure' and Coffey went to the field on New Year's Day - if she had sought help then, Texas could have survived.
Rachel Andrews, from the charity World Horse Welfare, went to assist Inspector Joynes during the rescue.
She said: "Without a doubt he was one of the most emaciated horses I've ever seen. His bones stood out with literally no coverage of fat whatsoever and I have no idea how he was strong enough to stay standing up.
"He looked absolutely pitiful with his head hanging low and was clearly in extreme pain from his swollen sheath. We knew we had to get him out of there as soon as possible.
"He received the very best emergency treatment but sadly it was just too late and the decision was made to put him to sleep, ending his terrible suffering.
"I just wish we had been alerted to his plight a few days earlier in case we could have saved him."
Coffey pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and failing to ensure its needs were met.
She was handed a six-year-ban on keeping equines.
District Judge Nick Sanders also ordered her to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work, £1,100 in costs and a community order.
The RSPCA said Spice is now at a World Horse Welfare rescue centre where he is undergoing rehabilitation. It is hoped he can be found a new home soon.