Thursday, October 24, 2013

ANIMAL CRUELTY CHARGES: Starving, flea-infested dogs awarded a second chance

Photo left: Dogs when seized from property. Photo right: One of the dogs after two months in RSPCA care.

A local Schofields man failed to appear in Blacktown Local Court on Friday 11 October and was found guilty of four charges of animal cruelty against two dogs. Custody of the dogs was awarded to RSPCA NSW.

In April 2013, an RSPCA Inspector attended a premises at Schofields in response to a complaint regarding two dogs in poor condition at the property. The Inspector saw a male brindle Mastiff crossbreed and a female red boxer, both in poor body condition with its hips and ribs clearly visible. The boxer was tethered to a post under the awning of the house. There didn’t appear to be any water available.

Closer inspection of both dogs revealed they were both carrying a heavy flea burden. After there was no answer at the house, both dogs were then seized under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act Section 24J.

Examination by a vet revealed both dogs to have a body condition score of 5 (where 1 is an ideal body condition and 5 is the most underweight), heavy flea infestation, mild dehydration and possible anaemia. The vet concluded it would have taken at least 21 days for the dogs to have reached such a poor condition.

The Inspector returned to the house on 19 April and spoke to the man who claimed ownership of the dogs and he refused to surrender them on that day, and again several days later.

By June both dogs had showed significant improvement under the care of RSPCA NSW.

The local Schofields man was convicted of two charges of failure to provide veterinary treatment of an animal and two charges of failure to provide proper and sufficient food to an animal. He was fined $6,000 and $6,945.37 in vet / boarding fees. Custody of the two dogs was awarded to RSPCA NSW.

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