Horsetail thefts baffle Duncan RCMP

By Michael Mui, 24 Hours Vancouver



It’s going to create quite a bit of discomfort (for the horses) come fly season. —RCMP Const. Krista Hobday

A thief with designs on horsetails on Vancouver Island has become a nightmare for an animal owner in the Duncan area.

RCMP Const. Krista Hobday said Monday a Cowichan Region woman has twice had the tails of her horses sheared off in less than a year.

The latest incident happened overnight on Jan. 12 when the woman discovered five of her horses sans tails after spending the night in her barn.

In March, two other horses similarly lost their tails over two days.

“I suspect the person who’s taken it needs the hair for something,” Hobday said. “I can’t imagine they took it just to be cool, but worse things have happened.”

Horsehair can be used in craft products and ceremonial masks, according to RCMP. A single tail takes about six years to grow back.

Hobday said the suspect, if caught, would likely face mischief charges. She said one unusual aspect of the case is the woman appears to be the only victim in the region.

“I’m wondering if it’s just where she’s located, and it’s just an easy target, or it could be personal. We don’t know.”


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