HAVING a real life unicorn is the latest trend for children’s birthday parties, school fetes and even weddings!
From hair dye and cakes to cosmetics to Harry Kane and his teammates relaxing on inflatables, the unicorn craze is sweeping the UK.
Now ponies are being turned into unicorns, wearing horns, hair dye and paint to transform them into the fairytale favourites.
Ali Grange, 37, bought a unicorn horn for her pony Cherry Blossom, 15, as a treat for her daughter Rose, seven, and her friends.
They enjoyed it so much Ali set up Cotswold Unicorns and now attends events with Cherry Blossom while dressed as a fairy!
Ali said: “Rose would invite her friends to come to see Cherry Blossom to ride and groom her, and I got her a unicorn horn.
“The shy children were more keen to join in when she wore it and that’s how it evolved. We’ve been going to parties for two months.
“We’re asked to children’s birthdays, Brownies and Beavers, schools and even weddings. We also work with a children’s hospice.
“One little girl couldn’t pick up a paintbrush but the nurses and staff helped her paint Cherry Blossom and it really was such a special moment.”
She spends 30 minutes working at each event and does a maximum of four each week.
The children pet and groom her for 20 minutes and then spend five minutes painting things they consider magical like rainbows, stars and hearts on her coat.
Ali, also mum to Dylan, nine, and Ethan, four, has ridden since childhood and stresses welfare is her first priority.
She said: “Cherry Blossom is regularly seen by the farrier, the vet and equine dentist. She’s our family pet and it’s vital she is comfortable.
“We use non-toxic paint, ensure she’s in the shade if it’s hot, and offer plenty of water and hay.”
A spokesperson for the RSPCA said anyone considering a unicorn party should focus on educating children on pony welfare and acting safely around them.
She said: “It’s really important they only ever opt for non-toxic products, give the pony plenty of breaks in a quiet place where they can rest undisturbed, and be aware of stress signals so they can make sure the horse is never put in a situation where it is anxious and might result in harm to the pony or the children and handler.”
A version of this story appeared in the Sunday People which you can see on the PDF below. If you have a pet business and would like to discuss publicity, please click here to contact me.