Woman fined £300 after dog is found in 'dreadful condition'
A Ballymena woman has pleaded guilty to causing suffering to a German Shepherd type dog.
Cathy Lee-McGuire (25), a former resident of Shanowen in Ballymena, admitted animal cruelty at Ballymena Magistrates' Court, on Wednesday, October 26.
Two charges were brought against Ms McGuire by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council under the Welfare of Animals Act (NI) 2011.
The first charge related to causing unnecessary suffering to a German Shepherd type dog, and a second charge said that she had failed to ensure the welfare of the dog.
The one-year-old dog was found in a severely emaciated state with all bones of the pelvis and the spine visible and a sunken appearance to its face at Ms McGuire's property during an investigation by an Animal Welfare Officer in February 2014.
McGuire received a fine of £150 for each of the two charges (£300) and was ordered to pay veterinary, kennel and legal costs totalling £580.25, with 26 weeks to pay.
Speaking after the case, a spokesperson for Mid and East Antrim Borough Council said that all the reports of animal cruelty it receives are investigated.
"Council gives a high priority to the welfare of domestic pets and operates a rigorous enforcement policy to ensure full compliance of regulatory requirements," he said.
"Complaints are investigated thoroughly and where necessary formal action is taken, including being brought before the courts.
"This animal was found in a dreadful condition and it was apparent that it had suffered unacceptable neglect over a sustained period."
The dog has since recovered and the council confirmed that it had been successfully rehomed.