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PASSION THAT KILLED MY PILLOW TALK; Owner sues over mare's death.

IT was planned as a stable relationship when mare Pillow Talk was paired for breeding with stallion Diamond Ben.

Passion consumed them and they were soon doing what comes naturally.

But their love was to end in tragedy when Diamond Ben's ardour proved too much and Pillow Talk passed away.

Now, six years after the fatal love match, the mare's owner, Yvonne Campbell, is suing the stallion's owners, Oliver and Janet Steele, for pounds 15,000 for alleged negligence.

Pillow Talk, aged 19, and said to be worth at least pounds 4000, died from massive internal injuries after being taken home from the stud at Bladnoch, Wigtownshire.

Mrs Campbell, 47, of Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire, claims the two horses were put together and left alone in an enclosed shed to try to get them to mate.

It was a very dangerous practice and she would not have allowed it to take place if she had been asked, Mrs Campbell told Stranraer Sheriff Court.

The two horses should have been held by handlers while the stallion covered the mare, she said.

She claimed she had left Pillow Talk at the stud when the mare did not become pregnant so that another attempt could be made.

But when she went to collect Pillow Talk after a month, she was shocked to see her condition. She had lost weight and was wobbling about.

Five days later, Pillow Talk died and a post mortem showed a rectal tear, adhesions and peritonitis.

Mrs Campbell claimed she had a lifetime's experience with horses and was trained as a farrier.

It was while travelling around the country shoeing horses that she spotted Pillow Talk and bought her at the age of eight for pounds 2200.

They went on to represent Scotland in the British Showjumping Finals at the National Equestrian Centre.

The case will continue at a date still to be fixed.
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Author:McCOLM, EUAN
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jan 22, 2000
Words:313
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