Bathgate, West Lothian: Mhairi Thomson

#TheList Mhairi Siobhain Thomson, born 25/08/1982, of Riddochhill Drive, Blackburn, Bathgate EH47 7LB – starved a dog over several weeks until he became emaciated

Dog abuser Mhairi Siobhain Thomson from Bathgate

The court heard Thomson’s neighbours called the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals because they thought her black and tan Staffordshire bull terrier was too thin.

When SSPCA inspectors went to the accused’s home they found seven-year-old family pet Milo with his bones showing through his skin.

Procurator fiscal Katrine Craig told the court: “The dog appeared bright but was clearly very thin. Its spine and pelvic bones were clearly visible and there appeared to be a lot of muscle wastage.

“The accused agreed that her dog did indeed require urgent treatment and gave consent for the dog to be removed immediately.”

Mrs Craig said the vet recorded the dog as being “emaciated”, with a body score of just one out of nine. She said the dog weighed 10.2kg when a properly fed dog of that size should weigh around 15kg.

She added: “The view was formed by the vet that the dog was being caused unnecessary suffering by the failure to provide adequate and basic nutrition and necessary veterinary treatment. It was estimated that for the dog to be in such poor condition the neglect would have occurred over a period of weeks.”

She said the SSPCA had put Milo on a weight gain programme and he put on 1.8kg over the next 11 days. A three-year-old lurcher belonging to Thomson’s partner was also in the house but was found to be in good bodily condition.

The SSPCA had no concerns regarding this dog which the accused claimed she’d fed at the same time as her own pet.

Thomson pleaded guilty to causing the animal unnecessary suffering between October 1 and December 4, 2014, by failing to provide him with appropriate and adequate nutrition.

Sheriff Susan Craig told Thomson she wasn’t going to fine her because her “finances are extremely restricted”.

Sentence: 80 hours of unpaid community work; banned from keeping or owning a dog for two years (expired 2017).

Source: Edinburgh Evening News (removed)

Cricklewood, London: Paul Brown

#TheList Paul Nigel Michael Brown, born 01/05/1961, previously of Walm Lane, Cricklewood, London NW2 3BU – failed to seek veterinary care for a dog found collapsed with unexplained horrific scalding injuries all over her head and body

Girlie was found with untreated scalding wounds caused by hot liquid being deliberately poured onto her head and body
Girlie’s skin was peeling off exposing infected wounds and raw flesh

Brown pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to the female dog, Girlie, by failing to seek professional veterinary care for the wounds on her body.

The RSPCA were called to Brown’s property in February 2015 and found the pup, thought to be two years old, collapsed on a blanket in the garden with severe wounds and her skin “literally hanging off”.

She was so badly scalded on her face and body that she was given little chance of survival by vets.

Although there was insufficient evidence to prove that Brown had poured hot liquid on to the dog, the nature of the injuries indicated it had been done so deliberately.

Nicole Broster, an RSPCA inspector said: “I will never forget the shock I felt when I walked into the garden and found Girlie. I still cannot believe anyone could leave a dog in that condition.

“She had scalds covering at least a third of her body and large areas of her skin were simply peeling off, leaving infected wounds and pink skin underneath. She must have been in enormous pain and suffering terribly.

“She was very lethargic and depressed, and the vet confirmed she had collapsed due to clinical shock. I had to physically pick her up in my arms and carry her but as I did so her skin came away in my hands and stuck to my clothing. It was truly heartbreaking.”

Girlie was taken straight to a vet for treatment who told the RSPCA that the wounds “most likely originated from someone pouring or throwing hot water from a kettle or pan straight over her face and down her body.”

Brown said he was looking after Girlie for two weeks for a friend while they were undergoing house renovations. He did not contact the owners and ignored their efforts to contact him.

Girlie recovered in the RSPCA’s care and was rehomed. She must, however, must wear a t-shirt to protect her from sunburn.

Sentencing: 12-month community order involving 150 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay £560. Banned from keeping animals for life.

Kilburn Times
Daily Mail

June 2020 update: we are advised that Paul Brown is currently living in a homeless hostel in Willesden, north-west London.

Burnley Wood, Burnley: Sheridan Greer

#TheList Sheridan ‘Shez’ Greer, born 21/11/1991, most recent known address Wellington Street, Barnoldswick BB18 but as at January 2020 believed to be in Parkinson Street, Burnley Wood, Burnley, Lancashire BB11 – locked two dogs in a kitchen without food or water and threw their starved bodies out with the rubbish.

Dog killer Sheridan Greer from Burnley, Lancashire, UK
Dog killer: Greer told the RSPCA that she had been unable to look after the two dogs after her benefits were cut and her boyfriend moved out.

Single mother Greer locked Staffordshire Bull terriers Patch and Duke in the kitchen without food or water after moving out of her terrace house in Burnley, Lancashire, following her split with her boyfriend.

Twelve-month-old Patch and 18-month-old Duke were forced to scavenge desperately from bin bags and bare cupboards and even attempted to eat empty tin cans and old dishcloths.

Sheridan Greer left two dogs to starve to death then threw them out with rubbish
The bodies of the two young dogs were left dumped in the rear yard of the Burnley Wood property.

Police and RSPCA inspectors raided Greer’s home and found the carcasses of her two pets dumped in the back yard surrounded by bin bags full of rubbish.

Greer also left her two pet cats to fend for themselves, but they survived the four-week ordeal.

Greer admitted causing unnecessary suffering to Patch and Duke, and failing to provide a suitable environment for the cats.

Greer told investigators that she couldn’t cope with looking after her pets after her benefits were reduced and she split up with her boyfriend.

But rather than contact the authorities for help with the dogs she simply moved out, abandoning the dogs for four weeks.

Sheridan Greer also left two cats to fend for themselves in her abandoned property.
One of Greer’s surviving cats.

She also left her two pet cats to fend for themselves, but fortunately they survived.

The animals’ ordeal began when Greer moved in with a friend leaving her pets behind.

She returned to the terrace house on several occasions but did not give her pets any food or water.

A post mortem showed that both dogs weighed 11 kilos when they died, 20 per cent less than 14 kilos they should have weighed.

RSPCA Inspector Lyndsey Taylor said the dogs would have been starving for at least four weeks before they died to have lost the weight that they did.

She said: ‘The scene in the house was appalling. The smell was overpowering and the mess was shocking. In the kitchen the two dogs had been left without any food or water.

‘It seems the dogs had got into the bin and it was clear that they were so hungry that they had tried to eat dog food tins.

‘There were rags in their system which showed what they had resorted to eating dishcloths or other like items.

‘Leaving those dogs to starve to death is a heartless and callous thing to do. They would have died a slow and painful death.

‘Seeing those dogs when we first went to the house is an image that will stay with me forever.

Greer now uploads makeup videos to Facebook to promote Younique products

‘They had died in the kitchen and then were thrown out like pieces of rubbish. We understand that after she moved out she had actually been coming back to the property but she still let them starve to death.

‘She probably couldn’t cope with looking after the pets but that is no excuse for what she did.’

One former neighbour of Greer’s told the Daily Mail: ‘What she did to those poor animals was a dreadful thing. She should have got a prison sentence.’

Dog killer Sheridan Greer from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

Another neighbour said: ‘She’s known as the dog killer around here. My daughter went to the school round the corner with her daughter.

‘They found out what was going on in the house because her daughter wasn’t going to school so the teachers came round.’

‘They looked through the letterbox and said there was faeces everywhere and saw some cats. Then the RSPCA turned up with the police and removed the cats who were alive, thank god.

‘They then found the dogs in the dustbin outside. It’s just disgusting.’

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months; ordered to pay £200 court costs. Lifetime ban on keeping all animals.

Daily Mail
Lancashire Telegraph

Antrim, County Antrim: Aleshia McLaverty

#TheList Aleshia Frances McLaverty, born 10/01/1992, of Islandbawn Drive, Antrim BT41 1JE – abandoned a five-month-old puppy in a flat, where his starved body was found hanging from blinds

Dog killer Aleshia McLaverty

McLaverty admitted a charge of cruelty after the body of the maggot-infested Labrador cross, known as Sam, was discovered by shocked animal welfare officers at a flat registered to her in the Greystone estate in Antrim.

She pleaded guilty to charges of permitting unnecessary pain or distress to a dog under her control and being the keeper of a dog without a valid licence.

Victim Sam, who died a horrible death through dehydration and starvation after being abandoned by Aleshia McLaverty
Victim Sam died a horrible death through dehydration and starvation after being abandoned by Aleshia McLaverty

Deputy District Judge Chris Holmes said pictures he was shown in the case were “the worst photos I have ever seen of cruelty to an animal”.

Malcolm Irvine, prosecuting on behalf of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, said after receiving a report from a member of the public about a dead dog at a property, animal welfare officers gained entry to the Firmount Drive address in April 2014 to be met with a “pungent” smell and a house full of flies with floors covered with dog faeces.

Sam was found dead hanging upside down from a blind cord with maggots in his mouth and eyes.

Mr Irvine said there was no food and the toilet bowl was dry suggesting the dog had drank from it and there were scratch marks on packets of food consistent with the dog trying to find something to eat.

A post mortem revealed Sam died of dehydration and starvation. He was likely in his death throes as he tried to jump through a window in a last gasp bid to escape but then became entangled on a blind.

Dog killer Aleshia McLaverty

During interviews McLaverty first said the dog belonged to her sister and that she herself did not live in the house as she had gone to stay with her mother but later in court she pleaded guilty to the offences.

Defence barrister Aaron Thompson said it was a “tragic case of passive neglect” and said the house was registered to McLaverty but she took nothing to do with it and her sister had lived in the address at some stage.

He said although McLaverty owned the dog she did not have direct control of him and the house was “abandoned”. He said she had not lived there for some time and the dog was trapped in the house when she became pregnant and went to live with her mother.

Dog killer Aleshia McLaverty

He said it was the sort of tragic case which “captures the ire of the community” and he said McLaverty, who now lives with her partner and their child, was “very emotional and distressed” and came to the court with a “good character” and with a clear record.

By her guilty plea he said she accepted she knew the dog was in the house and “effectively did nothing about it”.

Dog killer Aleshia McLaverty

Suspending a two months jail term for two years, District Judge Alan White said he had to give credit for the guilty plea and her clear record and the fact she has a “new baby”.

In the Greystone estate, local people expressed their disgust at the death of the dog.

One resident who did not wish to be named, who had seen inside the house, said: “It was disgrace what happened to that dog, we believe it was trying to escape through the window when it became entangled and there were tufts of hair left on the blinds and the house was full of dog faeces”

Sentencing: two-month jail term, suspended for two years Banned from keeping animals for just five years (expires August 2020).

Belfast Telegraph

Greater Manchester: Paula Wood, James Brady, Louise Colwell, Kenneth Colwell, Tommy Greally and Stacy Greally

#TheList puppy farm dealers Paula Amanda Wood aka Paula Keegan (12/07/68) and her partner James Brady (29/05/62) both of 18 Springwood Avenue, Chadderton, Oldham OL9 9RR , Paula’s daughter Louise Anne Colwell aka Louise Donald (20/01/87) of 76 Fields New Road, Chadderton, Oldham OL9 8NH, and her now ex-husband Kenneth Ryan Colwell (10/08/87) of 19 Lynthorpe Road, Moston, Manchester M40 0JT, plus associates Thomas Patrick Greally (28/12/84) of 5 Liberty Court, Farnworth, Bolton BL4 9HW, and his now ex-wife Stacy Jane Greally née McEwan (08/12/84) of 24 Kirby Avenue, Chadderton, Oldham OL9 9PF

Photo composite shows puppy farm dealers Stacy McEwan, Tommy Greally, Louise Colwell, Kenny Colwell, Paula Keegan, James Brady
This gang of fraudulent puppy dealers sold sick and dying animals across Greater Manchester

The gang were selling around 15 puppies from various breeds including chihuahuas, pomeranians, spaniels, shih tzus, and Yorkshire terriers for between £550 and £650 each – netting around £8,000 a week.

They scoured Europe for the young dogs – some of which had just days left to live.

Puppies rescued from Greater Manchester puppy ring
Six of the rescued puppies were so ill they had to be put down and another 65% had birth defects.

They then faked pedigree documents, healthcheck cards and produced glossy brochures to trick potential buyers into believing they were buying healthy pets.

Yet 65 percent had life-threatening, congenital defects leaving dozens of animal lovers heartbroken.

An investigation into the three couples was launched by the RSPCA’s special operations unit, dubbed Operation Pagan, and Greater Manchester Police.

Addresses across Greater Manchester were raided in November 2013 after details from pet owners who had bought sick puppies from the gang.

Paula Wood and James Brady
Brady and Wood

Officers seized a total of 39 puppies kept in purpose-built pods at the rear of the addresses.

Sadly, six of the puppies were so unwell they had to be put down by a vet.

Two-thirds of the rescued pups had congenital problems.

Stacy McEwan

Police also seized £3,500 in cash along with a step-by-step guide to puppy selling which spelt out how sellers would get £50 commission on each sale.

Kenny Colwell
Kenny Colwell

Jailing Thomas Greally and Kenneth Colwell both for 20 weeks, and James Brady for 10 weeks, a District Judge blasted the gang for their ‘remorseless attitude’ to the puppy trade.

Stacy McEwan, Louise Colwell and Paula Keegan
Stacy McEwan, Louise Colwell and Paula Keegan

Louise Colwell, Stacey Greally and Paula Wood were handed suspended sentences and ordered to carry out community service and pay costs.

All six defendants were banned from keeping dogs for the rest of their lives.

None of the defendants would reveal where in Europe the puppies came from.

Paula Keegan and James Brady
Paula Keegan and James Brady

Chief inspector Ian Briggs, from the RSPCA’s special operations unit, said: “This case is hugely significant.

“It shows the lengths some dealers will go to, making it look like the puppies they are selling have been bred in a homely environment.

“They produce glossy brochures, healthcheck cards and fancy-looking ‘pedigree’ documents that aren’t worth the paper they are written on.

“This investigation has shown puppy dealers are becoming increasingly savvy to make their dealings look legitimate.

“They rent houses and put a smattering of furniture in them to make it look like a family home, from which they peddle these sick puppies.

“On some occasions that we have been told about, adult dogs would be presented under the false pretence that they were the parents of the puppies being sold.

“It is organised crime and animal suffering on an almost industrial scale.”

Thomas Greally and Kenneth Colwell – 20 weeks in custody

James Brady – 10 weeks in custody.
Paula Keegan – 12-week custodial sentence suspended for 12 months, 250 hours’ unpaid work, £1,000 costs.
Louise Colwell and Stacy McEwan – 20 weeks’ custody suspended for 12 months, 300 hours’ unpaid work, £2,000 costs.

All six defendants were banned from keeping dogs for the rest of their lives.

Manchester Evening News
Daily Mail