Woman sentenced for starving her pet dog
A starving schnauzer dog had to be put down in what a council official described as "a harrowing case" of animal cruelty.
Jacqueline Davis (50) from the Quickthorn area of Coleraine was sentenced at Coleraine Magistrates Court yesterday after pleading guilty to causing the unnecessary suffering of a dog for which she was responsible.
Animal Welfare Officers found the dog in a dreadful condition. Its coat was matted with its own faeces and there was a bloody discharge at its rear end. When the vet examined the dog it was found that the animal was suffering from a womb infection, causing a swollen abdomen and a bloody discharge. The pet was also underweight and lethargic. To prevent further suffering and pain, the dog was euthanised.
The charges were brought against Ms Davis by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council under the Welfare of Animals Act (NI) 2011.
Deputy District Judge Hamill acknowledged that the defendant had difficult personal circumstances at the time of the offence and imposed a two-year conditional discharge and also ordered Davis to pay costs of £166.
A Causeway council spokesman said: "Council gives a high priority to the welfare of domestic pets and operates a rigorous enforcement policy.
"Complaints are investigated thoroughly and, where necessary, formal action is taken, which may include the service of Improvement Notices or, in extreme cases, the seizure of animals.
"The council may also prosecute for offences such as in this particularly harrowing case, which I hope serves as a warning to anyone who does not take appropriate care of animals."