Young dog had to be put down after owners failed to get help for ‘horrific’ injury

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A dog had to be put down after a “horrific injury” on her face was not treated. An RSPCA inspector described it as one of the worst wounds she had seen on an animal.

The couple who owned 18-month-old Elsa avoided an immediate jail sentence after being charged with causing unnecessary suffering to their pet. Dean Wayne Dando, 42, and Ceri Ann Parker, 40, both of Highbury Road, Ely, appeared at Cardiff Magistrates’ Court and were handed suspended prison sentences after pleading guilty.

The court heard that they failed to get veterinary care for swelling to the bullcross dog’s face after she was attacked and injured by another dog. RSPCA deputy chief inspector (DCI) Gemma Black told the court that Parker had told her they had not been able to afford to take Elsa to the vets for any treatment. She also told the inspector that she had been bathing the wounds, but that they had been getting worse, and although Elsa was eating and drinking she was getting thinner.

DCI Black said: “I immediately saw a horrific injury on the eye and face on a bullcross type dog that was lying on their sofa. The entire left side of Elsa’s face was swollen with wounds and pus surrounding it. Her left eye was not visible, instead there was fleshy inner eyelid exposed and swollen where the eyeball should be.

“The wound was one of the worst I had seen on an animal. Elsa was thin with her ribs and hip bones prominent and there was a strong smell of what I have previously known to be infection in the air. Elsa had bloody staining also on her legs.”

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DCI Black told Parker she had serious concerns for the welfare of Elsa and that she wanted to take her to the vet immediately. The couple both agreed that they would sign her into the care of the RSPCA for treatment. The court heard that a full veterinary examination was carried out and the vet confirmed that he believed that Elsa had been caused to suffer unnecessarily. Elsa weighed 11.6 kg, which the vet advised was a body score of two out of five.

“She had several masses all over her body, with one that had a wound and that was scabbing in the stomach area,” said inspector Black. “The inside of her mouth was horrific, with rotten teeth and exposed roots.”

The independent vet advised she should be put to sleep on welfare grounds to prevent further suffering. In mitigation the court was told the couple, who each faced one offence under the Animal Welfare Act, were remorseful.

Magistrates sentenced Dando to 12 weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months, ordered him to carry out 10 days rehabilitation activity requirement and to pay £250 costs. Parker was sentenced to 10 weeks imprisonment suspended for 12 months, was ordered to carry out 10 days RAR and to pay £100 costs. Both were disqualified from keeping any animals for two years and were ordered to each pay a £128 victim surcharge.

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