It is with great regret and sadness that The Horse Trust must announce that our much-loved resident, Mull, was put to sleep at the impressive age of 24 years.
Mull arrived at The Horse Trust in 2016 with fellow police horse Kilsyth. We are so pleased that Mull got to spend his final four years enjoying a slower pace of life at The Horse Trust after enjoying such a full career. Mull began his career with Strathclyde Police in 2003 (becoming Police Scotland when the eight forces merged); he made history as the first coloured horse to serve for the Scottish police!
Everybody who ever had the pleasure of meeting Mull will remember him for a number of reasons, perhaps his striking good looks, maybe his peaceful disposition, possibly even his colossal size… one thing we know everyone will instantly remember Mull for was his big, beautiful wobbly bottom lip! This wonderful lad used to love just letting his lip hang whenever he was content, which seemed like all of the time!
One of our favourite memories of this handsome gelding was when he helped a young gentleman propose to his very-soon-to-be fiancée at The Horse Trust! Mull stood waiting for the perfect moment to reveal the engagement ring plaited into his flowing mane! Many tears of happiness flowed that day and we knew Mull was so chuffed to be involved in all the excitement!
If you tuned into our HT-TV channel which we launched on our social media during the Spring 2020 Lockdown, you will have noticed Mull being featured! This went down very well with our followers as everyone just adored him.
In his time with Police Scotland, Mull was highly renowned for his confidence in crowds. This calm, yet confident, demeanour led to him being used at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014, where he provided crowd control services and was on hand to police any emergencies, should they have arisen. Over the course of his bright career, Mull also provided crowd control services for parades, football matches, concerts and also carried out various other public order duties.
In 2004 Mull also had the honour of becoming the only Scottish police horse to take part in the Lord Mayor’s Parade – a great honour for him (or any horse)! Despite being an intimidating full-up 17hh, Mull was a favourite with the public he served, perhaps in part due to his very recognisable markings! In the photo on the right you can see Mull and his rider both looking very admirable in their ceremonial tack.
The decision was made to retire Mull to The Horse Trust after he started suffering with recurrent lameness issues. Although his riders were devastated for him to leave, it was clear that Mull had gone above and beyond in his duties to his country, and was well-deserving of a peaceful retirement – which is exactly what he got at The Horse Trust.
Like most of our elderly retirees, it was no secret that Mull had developed arthritis in his joints. Until recently, this had been managed well and did not cause him any major issues, other than being a bit stiffer and slower each year.
But unfortunately, the hard summer ground this year exacerbated the issue, and Mull had been suffering with severe arthritis and recurrent lameness over the summer, which, despite lengthy periods of rest and repeated veterinary treatments, showed no signs of easing. We had hoped that Mull might enjoy a bit more time with us, but our hearts collectively sank when he came in from his paddock with a very high temperature.
Despite additional treatment by our vet, Nicky, Mull showed no signs of improvement and the decision was made to let him go.
Mull left us very peacefully, after receiving treats and cuddles from his grooms; there is no doubt in our minds that he was fully aware how loved he was by our whole team.
Marvellous Mull, we will miss seeing your stunning face each day, but we can all breathe a sigh of relief knowing that you are now galloping free from pain up in the great meadow in the sky. Rest in peace, beautiful boy.