Ruby the horse, famous for getting on a train, is now heading an anti-horse meat campaign
She captured the hearts of the nation when she turned up on a train and in a casualty waiting room.
But now Welsh pony Ruby is to launch a campaign at the National Assembly to stop horses ending up in the food chain.
Ruby’s owner Michelle Crowther says she’s been disgusted by the unfolding revelations over mislabelled horse meat in burgers and lasagne supposedly made of beef.
She also hit out at the consumption of properly labelled horse meat – which is not illegal in the UK.
Michelle, who runs rescue operation The Horse and Owner Help Centre, in Wrexham, said: “I don’t think horses should be slaughtered in this country for human consumption at all. I don’t think there’s a case for it.
“They’re pets, they’re sport animal and they’re companion animals to the British public and, as such, when they come to the end of their lives horses and ponies ought to be euthanised properly – like we would a cat or a dog or any other pet.
Ruby the horse is famous for getting on a train
Mum-of-three Michelle, 44, added: “It’s just abhorrent. It’s a horrible idea.”
Michelle plans to take Ruby to the National Assembly next month to highlight her fight.
Ruby hit the headlines in 2011 when traveller Joe Purcell took her to casualty at Wrexham’s Maelor Hospital because she was pregnant. He also tried to board a train with her in the town.
CCTV images of the pair made international news.
Just months later Mr Purcell signed Ruby over to Ms Crowther after the pony was taken into care.
Ruby has since given birth and lives on the Crowthers’ family farm at Brymbo, Wrexham.
A world away from her train antics, Ruby will be travelling to the Cardiff Bay protest by horsebox and trailer.
Michelle, chair of the North East Wales Bridleways Association, claims former race horses are going “en masse” into the human food chain.
The industry should do more to ensure thoroughbreds have a better end to their lives than ending up on a plate, she said.
A spokesman for the British Horseracing Authority said annually only 1,000 or 1% of the thoroughbred population ends up in an abattoir.
“British Racing proactively finds new careers for horses after they finish racing, including through the dedicated charity Retraining of Racehorses,” the spokesman added.