A woman who punched and kicked out at her pony as her daughter rode it in a field has been banned from keeping animals.

Bradlea Clay also left two sick rabbits to starve in their own mess, Truro Crown Court heard.

Clay's next door neighbour in St Austell, Cornwall, heard shouting in a field where Clay's daughter was riding the pony and saw her shouting at the child and the animal.

The court was told 27-year-old Clay punched the pony several times and then grabbed the reins roughly so the animal ducked down to try and get the child off its back.

She then kicked out at the pony called Pearl before punching it under its jaw.

The RSPCA was contacted and officers found a giant Continental rabbit called Floppy and a Netherlands dwarf rabbit called Peter in a poor state at Clay's home. Both had to be put to sleep.

Mother of three Clay, who has moved to Doncaster since this incident, admitted three animal cruelty charges and was jailed for four months, suspended for 18 months.

Judge Simon Carr told her:"To punch animals is unforgivable."

She is banned from keeping animals for five years, save the dog, mice and goldfish she currently has. The pony was rehomed.