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Kildare man convicted of cruelty to a dog

At Naas District Court on Monday 5th March 2018, a man from Kildare was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and neglecting, or being reckless regarding the health and welfare of an animal contrary to the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013.

The case related to a terrier dog removed by the ISPCA from a property at Carbury, Co. Kildare on Friday 26th February 2016.

ISPCA Inspector Mary Claire Casement described to the court how she responded to a complaint made to the ISPCA’s National Animal Cruelty Helpline and found the aged terrier dog in an emaciated condition with large mammary tumours, bad teeth and poor skin.

Inspector Casement seized the dog and brought it to a veterinary practitioner where it was immediately euthanised on humane grounds to prevent further suffering. The man subsequently made contact with the ISPCA and, in an interview under caution, agreed that he was responsible for the dog.

In court, the defendant contested the charges claiming that the dogs were owned by his uncle who was in hospital and that he was not in control of the dog but merely feeding it. But, when asked by Judge Desmond Zaidan, he conceded that he was aware that the dog was in poor health from “around Christmas”, approximately two months prior to its removal. Judge Zaidan asked him “How could you have not done anything about it?”

The accused was convicted on two offences under sections 12(1)(a) and 12(1)(b) of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 and acquitted on two further counts under sections 11 and 13. Judge Zaidan imposed a fine of €500 on each count and ordered him to pay €1500 in state costs and €584 ISPCA expenses.    

Inspector Casement commented “When you take on the responsibility of caring for an animal you must address any issue that may arise. A failure to seek veterinary attention for this dog when it was clearly needed resulted in it being subjected to prolonged suffering”.

ISPCA Inspectors became authorised officers under the AHWA in May 2014 and since then have used their statutory powers effectively to deal with animal neglect, cruelty and abuse. Anyone who looks after animals have a legal obligation to provide them with their welfare needs. Failure to do so will result in them being held to account. The ISPCA will not tolerate animal cruelty and will do all that we can to stamp it out in Ireland.

If you are in any doubt about animal welfare concerns, the ISPCA would like to encourage members of the public to report online in confidence here, email or call the National Animal Cruelty Helpline on 1890 515 515.

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