Owner recovers stolen Shetland pony

PUBLISHED: 15:45 28 October 2008 | UPDATED: 13:43 06 May 2010

Shelley with the recovered pony

Shelley with the recovered pony

A SHETLAND pony stolen from its field last week has been reunited with its owner. Shelley Coates from Wheathampstead was given back her nine-year-old pony by an anonymous man whom she arranged to meet in a lay-by in Borehamwood on Friday. The tiny 32-inch

A SHETLAND pony stolen from its field last week has been reunited with its owner.

Shelley Coates from Wheathampstead was given back her nine-year-old pony by an anonymous man whom she arranged to meet in a lay-by in Borehamwood on Friday.

The tiny 32-inch-tall pony, called Helawi Candy Cotton, was stolen from her field at Shelley's stables in Lower Luton Road, Wheathampstead, between the afternoon of Sunday October 19 and the following morning.

In a desperate bid to find her pony, whose foal was weaned only two weeks before the theft, Shelley called all of her contacts in the pony trade to ask them to be on the look out.

Fortunately one of them knew someone who had been offered Helawi Candy Cotton and Shelley then got an anonymous call from the person who had her.

A relieved Shelley said this week: "I can't believe all the hard work paid off. We are so happy and relieved that she is back."

But Helawi Candy Cotton, who is normally a very trusting and friendly pony, has been left traumatised by the incident.

She is now terrified of being inside and is wary of being caught in her field.

Shelley, aged 36, said: "When I got her back she looked like she had lost a lot of weight and she was absolutely starving."

She went on to thank everybody who helped in the search. She said: "I really appreciate everybody who helped in getting her back. I was overwhelmed by all the support."

It is not the first time that pony breeder Shelley, who has around 70 other ponies, has fallen victim to crime - a spate of thefts started early last year in which various tack equipment and two large trailers worth £5,000 were stolen from the stables.

Two foals were also stolen around eight years ago.

Shelley has now moved all of her ponies off her land along Lower Luton Road because she fears that more of them could be stolen.

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