#TheList Clare Hobson, born c. 1977, of Dollywood Close, Buxton, High Peak SK23 7NX – starved and neglected her dog
The court heard how mother-of-one Clare Hobson failed to address cross-breed Labrador Coco’s loss of weight and her poor body and skin condition.
Prosecuting for the RSPCA, Andy Cash, told the hearing the charity had visited Hobson in 2016 over concerns about Coco. Hobson was given advice about the dog’s skin problems and apparent weight loss, but after a period of time Hobston stopped co-operating with the RSPCA.
Mr Cash added that the RSPCA had to execute a warrant to gain access to Hobson’s home to recover Coco, who went on to make a good recovery.
Coco should have weighed 20Kg but weighed only 14Kg when she was taken into the care of the RSPCA, according to Mr Cash.
A vet reported that Coco’s spine and ribs were visible from a distance and the dog had suffered from lesions and hair loss and also had a urinary tract infection.
RSPCA inspector Heather Morris said: “Coco was such a sorry sight and she was in a poor condition. When we took her away, she was so quiet. She was clearly a very poorly dog and she looked really down.
“Coco really is a totally different dog today.
“It is hard to believe that she is the same dog who I took into our care earlier this year. Back then she was so quiet and clearly suffering, but now she is so playful and happy. It goes to show what difference love and care makes towards a dog.
“When I saw her the following week she was a completely different dog and the change in her was obvious.
“It was so nice to see the change in her demeanour. The problem was that Hobson quite simply was not feeding Coco and as a result Coco was getting thinner and weaker.”
Inspector Morris said: “Hobson did initially follow advice a year ago, but sadly she stopped following this advice earlier this year which led to us becoming involved again.
“Poor Coco’s skin condition seemed to be caused by an allergy to so many things – grass, dust, mites, pollen and fleas.
“If your pet is in clear discomfort then you are legally responsible to ensure they do not suffer – something which Hobson failed to do.
Hobson admitted there had been a lack of care but explained this had been down to a lack of funds.
The defendant pleaded guilty to failing to ensure Coco was protected from pain and suffering by not adequately investigating skin and weight problems between March and June 2017.
She also admitted causing unnecessary suffering by failing to address Coco’s poor body condition and to a further count of causing unnecessary suffering by failing to investigate a skin problem.
Defence solicitor Lisa Tinsley told a previous hearing Coco had been Hobson’s partner Leo Gibson’s dog but that he had moved out, leaving the dog behind.
Hobson suffers with depression, according to Ms Tinsley, and she had child care issues and financial concerns.
Sentencing: 12-month community order with 120 hours of unpaid work; ordered to pay total of £765. Banned from keeping dogs for life.