MEMBERS of the public have offered a total of £1,500 in rewards for information leading to the conviction of the person who brutally attacked and killed a pony in Somerset.

Paddy, a mini cob pony, was lead away from his paddock to a quiet site near an industrial estate and brutally killed with a metal tethering stake on Saturday morning.

The pony's carcass was found at 11am on Saturday morning with his rear legs tied together with a rope, and the metal stake lying nearby, with blood and horse hair on it.

The RSPCA and Avon and Somerset Police have launched an appeal for information relating to the attack, which took place near Pen Mill Industrial Estate in Yeovil, Som.

Paddy's owner Dean Reddin, 20, has said he is "disgusted" by the attack on his pet.

"I just can't understand why anyone would want to do something so horrific to a defenceless animal," he said.

"Someone must have come and untethered him and led him away to a quiet place where they carried out this terrible attack.

"I just hope the sick person who did this is found."

Dean added: "Paddy was a rescue horse and when I first got him he was really thin so I fed him up and he would happily graze in a field with my partner's horse Bailey.

"He was about 18 months old and was so content. I have now moved Bailey away from the area as I fear for his safety."

READ MORE: Horse killed on Somerset wasteland was 'hit with a blunt instrument' 

A member of the public came across the horrific scene and alerted Avon and Somerset Police and the RSPCA as they could see a head wound and initially thought the horse had been shot.

This week, a County Gazette reader has come forward to pledge a £500 reward for information which leads to the conviction of the person who attacked the animal.

And, following our story, another reader has added £1,000 to the reward total, bringing it to £1,500.

RSPCA investigating inspector John Pollock said: "Someone has deliberately taken this horse from the field where it was kept and walked him down to this secluded location, where this horrific and cowardly attack took place.

"It appears he has been hit to the head, possibly a number of times, with the metal stake which was used to tether him.

"The owner was obviously distraught and we are now working with Avon and Somerset Police to find who is responsible."

An Avon and Somerset police spokesperson added: "We are appealing for witnesses following the discovery of the carcass of a horse.

"It was found on waste land off Lyde Road in Yeovil at about 11am (on Saturday).

"It appears the horse had been struck to the head with a blunt item. Its rear legs were tied together with a rope."

The spokesperson continued: "We are appealing for anyone who was in the area between midnight and mid-morning (on Saturday), who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously.

"A passing car driver, early morning dog walker, someone driving into work or finishing a late night shift may have information to help our enquiries.

"We would also be interested in hearing from members of the public who saw anyone in the area acting suspiciously over the few days/nights before the incident took place.

"We have notified the RSPCA and our enquiries into the incident are continuing. Anyone with any information should contact us, quoting reference 5219057043."

People can also contact Crimestopperd anonymously on 0800 555 111.