Friday, October 17, 2014

ANIMAL CRUELTY CHARGES: Cessnock man convicted of animal cruelty

On 8 July, 2014 an RSPCA NSW Inspector attended a property on Cessnock in response to a complaint about two emaciated dogs.

No one was home but the dogs could be seen in the back yard. One black dog was seen tied to the clothes line and was in an emaciated body condition. Another tan coloured dog was seen free in the yard, also emaciated, very lethargic and unwilling to walk.

Both dogs were immediately seized to be taken for veterinary assessment at the Hunter Shelter in Rutherford.

The vet found the tan female dog weighed 17.4 kilograms, with a prominent skeleton and severe loss of muscle mass. She had such a severe flea infestation; her skin was covered in a thick layer of flea dirt. Blood test results showed regenerative anaemia and low blood protein, while a faecal sample showed large numbers of hookworm, roundworm and whipworm eggs.

Initial veterinary findings for the black male dog were that he weighed 18.9 kilograms, also with a prominent skeleton and severe loss of muscle mass. Microscopic examination of a faecal sample revealed large numbers of hookworm and whipworm eggs. He was ravenous when offered food.

Both dogs were treated for their gastrointestinal parasite infestations and given routine vaccinations, flea treatments and placed on a high quality diet.

The vet concluded the dogs had not had proper and sufficient food for at least four weeks, while they went without proper veterinary treatment for their heavy flea and worm burden for at least a fortnight.

Almost two months later and after several failed attempts by RSPCA NSW to contact the owner of the dogs, the owner called the RSPCA in relation to the animals seized from his property.

In a recorded interview with an Inspector on 1 September 2014 the owner stated he was the owner of the black dog, called “Boofer”, and the tan female, called “Millie”, belonged to his ex-partner.

When asked when he last wormed the dogs, the owner replied “about three months ago before you took them and I knew they needed to be wormed again after she had pups.” He surrendered the dogs to the RSCPA.

The owner appeared in Cessnock Local Court 15 October 2014 and pleaded guilty to two charges of animal cruelty against two dogs, Failure to provide veterinary treatment to two dogs and failure to provide proper and sufficient food to two dogs.

The man has had a two year prohibition from the purchase, acquisition or custody of any animals and charge $2,744.35 in veterinary costs.

All charges are under NSW Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and Regulation

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