Devastating and sudden loss of popular Adoption Star Poppy

Adoption Star Poppy

On the evening of Friday 19th May 2017, Adoption Star and beautiful Shire horse Poppy sadly passed away. She was 15 years old.

This devastating loss is such a shock as Poppy had been in good health and was getting on well back home at Redwings Caldecott with new friend Tianna.

However, on the Friday her care team noticed she was showing signs of colic – stomach pain that can be a symptom of something very mild or extremely serious – and so called our vets out to her.

Poppy received pain medication and colic treatment, but when it was clear it was not making enough of a difference, she was taken straight to our horse hospital at our Hapton headquarters for surgery. But her condition had worsened rapidly and the severity of the colic meant she was simply too ill to survive the anaesthesia. Poppy sadly passed away before we could operate.

Owing to the severity of the symptoms and how quickly it advanced, we believe this was a full colon torsion – a twist of the large intestine, which is the most extreme form of colic horses can get. This can happen to any horse at any time, although it is more common in heavy horses, and sadly there would have been a very low chance of recovery for Poppy even if she had made it through the surgery.

We are devastated by the sudden loss of a much-loved member of the Redwings family, especially as it comes just over three weeks after we had to say goodbye to Poppy’s friend Gemma.

Poppy came to Redwings in 2013 after her mum had sadly passed away leaving her in need of horsey company. At our Caldecott Visitor Centre, Poppy spent many happy years with best friend Gemma and with our visitors and staff too; she was an incredibly popular member of the Adoption Scheme as she was so engaging and adored cuddles.

If you adopt Poppy, you will receive a letter explaining what happens to your adoption. We will move your adoption over to another Adoption Star automatically, but if you have a preference of another horse or donkey at Redwings that you would like to choose then please let our team know by calling 01508 481000 or emailing

We have set up a memorial fund in beautiful Poppy’s memory. If you would like to donate, please use the donation box below and thank you.

RIP Poppy, we will never forget you.

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Text HORSE 10 to 70085 to donate £10. This text will cost £10, plus a standard network rate message.