The I.L.P.H.

More than any other animal the horse is inextricably linked with human history. He has carried conquering armies from the Huns to the Mongols and increased the spread of trade, shaping the world as we know it today. His influence on our culture has been profound. What distinguishes the special relationship between man and horse is that the horse is both companion and beast of burden, friend and workmate. He shares our lives and our affection in the same way as the animals that we keep as pets. But man also works him and uses his body for meat as we do other domestic livestock, cattle and sheep. Until the recent dawn of our modern mechanical and industrial world through most of this millennium the horse has been integral to the daily life of mankind.

The horse's lot is not always a happy one. Anna Sewell in 'Black Beauty' describes the overworked, beaten and broken-kneed cab horses and draught horses on the streets of Victorian cities. A little later Ada Cole witnessed the treatment of English horses bound for slaughter on the docks of Antwerp, a sight that motivated her for the rest of her life and provoked her into taking up the battle against cruelty and indifference on behalf of horses. In 1927 she set up the organisation today known as the International League for the Protection of Horses. It has grown to become one of the world's leading international equine welfare charities and despite initiating many legislative reforms, the cruel treatment of horses transported for slaughter is still a major concern.

The ILPH working in Ethiopia

In the United Kingdom the ILPH runs farms dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of horses with over 300 equines in care at any one time. Full-time ILPH Field Officers, nearly all ex-mounted policemen investigate cases of cruelty and neglect, inspect markets and ports and check the nearly 2000 rehabilitated horses and ponies which have been rehomed through the ILPH loan scheme. Working in the developing world, the ILPH runs educational and training courses in equine management, saddlery, harness making, farriery, veterinary care and nutrition to combat the major causes of equine suffering and help the owners to help themselves. The focus is on providing education, as knowledge lives on after your departure, and using locally available materials to establish sustainable and permanent solutions to problems.

The ILPH is totally reliant on the support of the general public to continue its work. To find out how you can help please contact

The ILPH, Anne Colvin Hose, Snetterton, Norfolk, NR16 2NL or visit our Website,

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Updated: October 2005.