Tag Archives: kept in unsuitable conditions

Galashiels, Scottish Borders: Charlotte Roberts

#TheList Charlotte Amy Roberts, born 03/03/1991, of 274 Beech Avenue, Galashiels TD1 2LG – neglected a lizard to the extent it almost died

Pet peddlers Charlotte Roberts and Vickie Hay. Roberts was prosecuted for neglecting a lizard in her care
Charlotte Roberts (left) with wife Vickie Hay

Roberts, who together with wife Vickie Roberts (née Hay) is a notorious pet peddler with a history of allegedly selling on poorly kittens riddled with parasites, pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to the pet.

Reptile neglected by Charlotte Roberts from Galashiels, Scottish Borders

Animal welfare officers said the Bosc monitor lizard was close to death when they raided the flat following the tip-off.

In addition to the lizard they found 13 cats, two dogs and a rabbit.

Roberts avoided a ban from owning all animals and has signed over her dogs and cats to the Scottish SPCA.

But there are are still two dogs, five cats and a fish living in the property as they are in the ownership of her 23-year-old wife Vickie Roberts.

Vickie Roberts’ not guilty plea to causing unnecessary suffering to the lizard was accepted by the Crown.

Facebook warning about poorly kittens being sold on Facebook by Charlotte Roberts and Vickie Hay

The court heard was told how a complaint was made to the Scottish SPCA about animal neglect at the property.

Charlotte Roberts' sells kittens on Facebook

Charlotte Roberts admitted the lizard was in a “very bad” condition.

The court heard how it was motionless and in a state of collapse and had no access to water. The water dish was dry and was full of wood shavings.

Officers immediately removed the lizard for veterinary attention and it was found to be very weak and emaciated.

Its weight was 1.68 kilogrammes when it should be a healthy weight of between 2.5 and three kilogrammes.

The lizard had seven days of treatment which proved to be successful as the lizard was “fed back to life”. It has now been signed over to the Scottish SPCA.

Vickie Hay sells kittens on Facebook

The Crown had originally called for a ban on Charlotte Roberts owning all animals.

But after consulting the Scottish SPCA – who told them Roberts had been engaging well with them and also Lothian Cat Rescue – the motion was restricted to reptiles.

Depute fiscal Anna Robertson told the latest hearing the Scottish SPCA had spoken highly of Roberts’ attitude and that she had understood their stance over the lizard.

Ms Robertson said that as a result Charlotte Roberts had signed over her cats and one dog to the Scottish SPCA but said there were still animals in the Beech Avenue flat that had not been signed over as they belonged to Vickie Roberts.

Vickie Hay sells puppies on Facebook

She said there were still concerns as all the animals in the house had to be treated for fleas, the landlords Waverley Housing had a policy on the number of pets in their property and all vets in the area had indicated there were outstanding bills to be paid.

The fiscal added that it was understood there was a Go Fund Me page for a dog which had an ear infection.

Defence lawyer Colin Severin said that there were now two dogs, five cats and a fish in the property but added: “All remaining animals are in the ownership of her partner.”

Vickie Hay trawls Facebook looking for animals to sell on
Charlotte Roberts and Vickie Hay have been trawling Facebook for animals to buy and sell on for years. This post was from 2015.

As regards Charlotte Roberts he said, ‘she had taken on more than she could handle’, and there had been no malice involved.

He said a ban on keeping all animals would not be appropriate.

Sheriff Peter Paterson fined Charlotte Roberts £200 for causing unnecessary suffering to the lizard and banned her from keeping reptiles for two years.

But after hearing Charlotte Roberts has a joint Employment Support Allowance of £275 per fortnight with her partner, the sheriff said he found it “difficult to comprehend” how they could afford to keep the amount of cats and dogs they have.

Sentencing: fined £200. Banned from keeping reptiles for two years.

Border Telegraph

Windy Nook, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear: Amy Rutherford

#TheList Amy Rutherford, born 12/01/1997, of Coltsfoot Gardens, Gateshead NE10 9RE – locked her two cats in her squalid home while she went to live with her boyfriend

Amy Rutherford, who was banned from keeping animals indefinitely after abandoning two cats in a freezing property for six weeks
Amy Rutherford was banned from keeping animals indefinitely after abandoning two cats in a freezing property for six weeks

Cats Lucy and Lola almost starved to death after their owner, Amy Rutherford, abandoned them in a dark and freezing property for six weeks.

In court, she pleaded guilty to one count of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal and two of failing to ensure the welfare of an animal.

Abandoned cat Lucy was so thin her collar had slipped from her neck onto her hips
Abandoned cat Lucy was so thin her collar had slipped from her neck onto her hips

The court heard that the RSPCA were contacted in early September 2019 after members of the public reported seeing the “distressed” cats jumping up at the windows of Rutherford’s home.

An officer attended and left an RSPCA card, as well as putting sellotape around the hinges of the front door.

The investigator returned a number of times over the following days and saw that the tape was still intact, meaning nobody had entered or left the property.

Eventually, the police gained access on September 20.

Stewart Haywood, prosecuting for the RSPCA, said: “The conditions inside were appalling. There was a strong smell of urine and faeces and it was dark and cold.

“The light switches were not working and the rooms were covered in rubbish.”

The court heard that bin bags had been scratched at by the cats and there was no food or water in their bowls.

The prosecutor added: “The officer found Lucy. She was opening her mouth repeatedly but no sound was coming out. Her pink collar was wrapped around her hips rather than her neck.

“Her bones could be felt and her eyes were sunk.”

Lucy collapsed when she was put in a basket to the point officers thought she had died.

Lola, who was abandoned by her heartless owner Amy Rutherford
Lola, who was abandoned by her heartless owner Amy Rutherford

Lola, who was in a slightly better condition, was also seized and taken to a vets, where both were discovered to be emaciated and Lucy to be suffering from hypothermia.

When interviewed, Rutherford claimed she’d only ever left the pets for a couple of days and hadn’t replied to the RSPCA card because she’d been too busy with work.

John Williams, defending, said Rutherford was drinking too much at the time and suffered from secondary bipolar disorder and depression.

He added: “There’s no excuse and she accepts that. She abandoned the cats for about six weeks. She went to stay with her boyfriend as her mental health was deteriorating. She was a manager in a shop but she had to give that up as she could no longer carry on.”

District Judge Kate Meek said: “You had to move out of the house because it was uncomfortable for you because it was cold and dark, but, it’s alright for them [the cats] to suffer and not you?

“They, like any other pet animal, rely completely on you for their care and attention. When you take ownership of them, it’s effectively an agreement that you’re going to look after them.

“They’re technically no more able to do so themselves than a small, young child.”

The judge added: “I have looked at the pictures and they are quite distressing, as it is distressing to hear the particulars.

“It’s absolutely clear that this was over a prolonged period of time and both cats suffered a high degree of harm because of your lack of care and attention that you must be expected to provide any animal in your care.

“There is no justification or explanation for it.”

Sentencing: 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 18 months, with 250 hours of unpaid work. Banned from keeping pets indefinitely.

Chronicle Live

West Wales: Sean Burns, Kenneth Evans and John Clayton

#TheList Sean Ronald Burns, born 15/08/1970, of Rosehill Lodge, Ferry Lane, Pembroke SA71 4RG, Kenneth Darren Evans, born 09/10/1975, of 28 Llys Caermedi, Carmarthen SA31 1GX, and John A Clayton (dob tbc) of 17 Rhos Las, Carmarthen SA31 2DY – convicted on charges relating to cruelty to animals at Bramble Hall Farm in Pembroke Dock and operation of an illegal slaughterhouse

Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor
Sean Burns (left) pictured outside court with his solicitor

Sean Burns was convicted of multiple cruelty charges in relation to 215 animals at Bramble Hall Farm, Ferry Lane, Pembroke Dock SA71 4RG.

The charges included the unlicensed breeding of dogs, welfare and animal-keeping regulation charges relating to sheep, horses, dogs, pigs, and goats.

A total of 53 pigs, 80 sheep, three goats, 58 dogs, 20 horses and one donkey were removed from the smallholding after being found living in squalor and without adequate space, food or water.

Sean Burns pictured outside court

District Judge Christopher James told Burns he had “deliberately” inflicted suffering over a “significant period of time”.

He told Burns the condition of the animals was “extremely poor”, and that some dogs and puppies had “died due to the neglect suffered at your hands”.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

One horse was found with a pipe stuck in its hoof and two horses were found with no access to food or water.

They also found 10 newborn puppies in a plastic food bowl, two of which were dead.

Prosecutor Alexander Greenwood said the dogs were kept in a “hazardous environment”, with no bedding, and the floor wet with urine and faeces.

Atrocious conditions for the animals on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock

The court was told the animals displayed signs of “bullying behaviour” as food was so scarce and the bigger animals were keeping the smaller animals away from food.

The prosecution said this case of animal neglect was “one of the worst examples of its kind.”

The court heard Burns failed to provide documentation for any of the animals.

Defending, Aled Owen told the court Burns “has not got the skills to manage this farm efficiently”.

“Quite frankly, my client is illiterate,” he said.

The prosecution followed an investigation by public protection officers from Pembrokeshire Council, supported by Dyfed-Powys Police’s rural crime team.

Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns.
Sean Burns is pictured alongside his mother Pamela Burns. Although she initially faced similar charges to her son, the case against her was dropped because of her apparent ill health

Sean Burns’ mother Pamela Burns (born 12/08/1945) had faced 24 charges but the case against her ultimately did not proceed because she is said to be suffering from dementia.

Sean Burns was also convicted alongside associates John Clayton and Kenneth Evans on a string of charges relating to food hygiene, operating an illegal slaughterhouse and being involved in the illegal slaughter of sheep to produce ‘smokies’ – a West African delicacy where meat is cooked using a blow torch.

The illegal slaughterhouse operated in one of the agricultural outbuildings, with Clayton and Evans caught in the act by horrified inspectors.

The unit had been set up as a makeshift slaughter hall with six slaughtered sheep at various stages of preparation and further penned sheep awaiting the same fate.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

The court was told that conditions in the slaughter hall were insanitary and the floor awash with blood from the slaughtered animals as well as by-products from the slaughter process.

A herd of pigs was seen wandering among suspended sheep carcasses, feeding on the remains of the slaughtered animals.

Approximately six further carcasses of smoked sheep were found bagged in the boot of Evans’ car, ready for onward supply.

Evidence was gathered by officers and the carcasses were seized for condemnation.

A number of sheep were subsequently euthanized for humane reasons and restrictions were placed on the herd of pigs, preventing their movement off-site to address the potential disease risk and to protect the human food chain.

Conditions inside the illegal slaughterhouse being operated on Sean Burns' smallholding in Pembroke Dock, Wales

Clayton was convicted in 2002 for the same offence alongside David Jones of Moelfre Farm in Llanwnnen, John Beddows of Tregaron, Ceredigion, Trefor Williams of Llandysul, Ceredigion, Alun Evans and his brother Richard Evans both of Abernewrig, Lampeter, Malcolm Taylor of Oldbury, in the West Midlands, and Alun Lloyd of Llanfrynach, Pembrokeshire

Sentencing for these offences is to follow.

Magistrates in Court in Llanelli formalised that order for the removal of the animals owned by Pamela and Sean Burns of Bramble Hall.

Sentencing: Sean Burns was given 20 weeks in prison for illegal dog breeding, animal welfare charges and other summary matters. Although Pembrokeshire Council have incurred thousands of pounds in costs, Burns was only ordered to pay a £115 victim surcharge at this stage. He was handed an indefinite ban from keeping animals, including having any involvement or influence over the care or welfare of animals.

Milford Mercury
BBC News
Western Telegraph

Rumsam, Barnstaple, Devon: Ann Sim

#TheList equine sanctuary owner Ann Michelle Sim, born 26/08/1984, of Shearford Close, Barnstaple EX31 1AG – neglected and starved multiple horses in her care

Equine rescue boss Ann Sim was prosecuted for animal cruelty
Ann Sim with a rescued pony

Mother-of-three Ann Sim, who ran North Devon Equine Rescue in Rumsam, near Barnstaple, was given a 10-week suspended jail sentence and banned from keeping horses for 10 years after admitting three cruelty charges.

The RSPCA visited Sim’s so-called sanctuary and found horses so thin their spines and ribs could be seen through the skin.

Conditions were described as ‘chaotic’ with animals living in foul conditions among rubbish and with sparse and inadequate bedding.

Some of the neglected horses at North Devon Rescue Centre
Tiggy, Punchy and Bumble at North Devon Rescue Centre

Ponies and horses had overgrown feet and one had to have his eye removed because an infection had not been treated by a vet.

The court heard Sim had set up the centre with the best of intentions five years earlier but had struggled to cope when her personal life fell apart.

Prosecutor Kevin Withy said Sim had been on the radar of the RSPCA for some time before the offences were committed between June and September 2019.

Neglected pony Punchy at North Devon Equine Rescue in Barnstaple
Punchy at North Devon Equine Rescue in Barnstaple

In one of the foul stables inspectors discovered a mare and foal whose ribs and spine were visible due to lack of food. Conditions were filthy with little clean bedding and only ‘a limited amount of water’.

The animals had been suffering for a number of months and there was no control of parasites.

The chestnut mare, Bumble, also had severely overgrown feet and Sim had not called a vet. A Welsh gelding called Tiggy had an infected eye that needed to be removed and a pony, Punchy, was emaciated, anaemic and had overgrown feet.

Equine rescue boss Ann Sim was prosecuted for neglecting horses and ponies in her care
“Well-intentioned” Sim ignored an RSPCA warning and continued to neglect horses and ponies in her care

Defence barrister Herc Ashworth said the 35-year-old set up the rescue centre to “help abandoned horses back to health” and had “no intention of causing suffering”.

“I accept it was not a deliberate act on your behalf,” the judge added.

All the animals have since been rehomed.

Sentencing: 10-week custodial sentence, suspended for 12 months. Ordered to pay £322 costs. Banned from keeping equines for 10 years.

DevonLive
BBC News

Bethersden, Ashford, Kent: Tracy Middleton

#TheList Tracy Jane Middleton, born November 1968, of Little Oakhurst Brissenden Farm, Ashford Road, Bethersden, Ashford, Kent TN26 3BQ – jailed and banned from owning animals for 10 years after carcasses of sheep, lambs and cattle were found on her land.

Tracy Middleton. who was jailed after leaving dozens of animals to starve to death on her farm
Farmer Tracy Middleton was jailed after keeping animals in atrocious conditions and leaving many to starve to death

Tracy Middleton admitted 41 charges relating to animals on her farm, which covers 340 acres with 135 cows and 150 sheep. These included causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal and failing to provide adequate food and water.

She also admitted to breaches concerning ear tags, and for not sufficiently dealing with the carcasses of nine dead ewes and 15 dead lambs.

In February 2019, Kent Animal Defenders complained to the RSPCA after finding a dismal scene at the farm, despite the RSPCA raising concerns in 2018.

Decomposing animals on Tracy Middleton's farm
Decomposing animals on Tracy Middleton’s farm

Andrew Price, prosecuting for Kent Trading Standards, said officials carried out a series of visits from 2018 to 2019 after being contacted by animal welfare activists.

The cattle sheds had no dry area for the cows to lie down, the water troughs were almost empty and the mud was so deep that cows found it hard to move around.

Animals had bald patches of skin. There was a dead calf in the mud and one calf was seen in the yard with bailing twine in its mouth.

Middleton’s lawyer, Gordon Crow, said his client accepted the farm was chaotic and badly-managed but that she had been overwhelmed at the time and going through a traumatic time in her life. He urged District Judge Justin Barron not to jail Middleton because of the “untold damage” this would cause her family.

However, Judge Barron said the level of suffering was so serious that the only appropriate punishment was a custodial sentence.

Addressing Middleton he said: “No one could look at those pictures and say your animals didn’t experience a high level of suffering.”

Many of the remaining animals have now been moved or sold, and a local farmer has now leased the farm.

Sentencing: 120 days in jail. Ordered to pay £8,500 costs. Banned from owning or keeping any animals for 10 years with the exception of a cat and two dogs she owns.

KentOnline
BBC News

Moyraverty, Craigavon: Sheena McCartney

#TheList Sheena McCartney, born 15/11/1971, of 15 Drumellan Walk, Moyraverty, Craigavon BT65 5NH – persistently neglected her dogs

Dog abuser Sheena McCartney

Sheena McCartney was banned from keeping animals for five years after failing to ensure the welfare of two dogs in her care.

She was convicted on three counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a Rottweiler with an eye condition, failing to comply with an improvement notice requiring her to bring the dog to a vet for treatment, and wilfully neglecting the needs of both the Rottweiler and a lurcher.

Rottweiler neglected by  Sheena McCartney

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council pursued the prosecution under the provisions of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011 after completing an investigation, which was initiated by a report from a member of the public who was concerned about the dogs’ welfare.

McCartney initially did not respond to contact from the Council, and when she did, an improvement notice was issued to her requiring her to seek treatment for the Rottweiler’s eye condition.

This was not complied with and due to her lack of co-operation, a warrant to enter her property was secured.

The Animal Welfare Officer subsequently visited McCartney’s property with a vet, who assessed the Rottweiler as suffering and the lurcher as being likely to suffer given the conditions in which he was being kept.

Both dogs were immediately taken into Council care and later rehomed.

A Council spokesperson commented: “The judge in this case saw fit to give a custodial sentence in addition to a disqualification from keeping animals because the defendant persistently neglected the needs of her dogs’ and flagrantly disregarded animal welfare legislation.

Sentencing: custodial sentence suspended for 18 months. Ordered to pay £84 in costs. Banned from keeping animals for five years.

ArmaghI.com

Annan, Dumfries-Shire and Bishopbriggs, Glasgow: Marco Tondo and Nadine Campbell

#TheList puppy farm dealer Marco Tondo, born 18/10/1987, currently of 18 Shawfield Court, Annan, Dumfries-shire DG12 6JB but with links to the Shettleston area of Glasgow, and partner Nadine Campbell, born 07/12/1988, of 39 Colston Avenue, Bishopbriggs G64 1SL – sold sick puppies and ran an illegal ‘pet shop’

Scottish puppy farm dealers Marco Tondo and Nadine Campbell
Puppy farm dealers Marco Tondo and Nadine Campbell pictured outside Glasgow Sheriff Court

Wannabe gangster and alleged drug dealer Marco Tondo kept several dogs in cramped conditions at partner Campbell’s address in Bishopbriggs in October 2018.

The Scottish SPCA said the puppies were suffering from a number of serious health problems, including worm and flea infestations, parvovirus and coccidiosis – a parasitic infestation.

Investigating officers determined they had come from “suspected puppy dealers”.

Five puppies were sold at the “pet shop” where eight other young dogs were kept.

Two dogs had to be put down, one of which had suffered organ damage. Other dogs there were also poorly and underweight.

Scottish puppy farm dealer Marco Tondo

Tondo, who shares a baby daughter with co-accused Nadine Campbell, was set to face trial at Glasgow Sheriff Court but pleaded guilty to a charge of causing “unnecessary suffering” to the puppies.

Tondo and Campbell both admitted to operating a pet shop without proper authority involving the selling of five puppies and having eight other young dogs.

Scottish puppy farm dealer Nadine Campbell

The court heard Tondo put Jack Russell and Chihuahua puppies up for sale on Gumtree.

Two buyers came to the property in Bishopbriggs, where Campbell was living.

Tondo told them not to feed the puppy on the journey as it would be “sick due to travel.”

He claimed one dog had been wormed but failed to forward the paperwork to the buyers. It was later discovered that the puppy had not been wormed or microchipped.

The buyers paid £350 and Tondo did acknowledge that the puppy was “unwell” – it later vomited in the buyers’ car and its health deteriorated.

The puppy was taken to the vet for dehydration where its breathing became “laboured” and died.

Tondo could not be contacted and his phone appeared “out of service.”

The court heard of another incident when a vet and her daughter bought a dog from Tondo.

The vet noted that the dogs didn’t show typical puppy behaviour and were underweight – she also noted there was no food, beds or blankets for the animals.

The vet later bought the dog after discussing it with her daughter and was told by Tondo that the puppy had been vaccinated and microchipped.

The dog’s health deteriorated as it became dehydrated and was passing clear watery fluids.

The puppy was taken for veterinary treatment but did not respond to its medication.

A third puppy was then bought on October 21, 2018, at an address in Larbert, Stirlingshire.

Prosecutors said the dog – who also had fleas – then “collapsed, was pale and had a fever”.

Vets found it had signs of “organ damage”. The dog died on October 25, 2018.

A fourth puppy later sold also needed vet treatment.

The charge stated a number of puppies at the address in Bishopbriggs were “confined in a small cage” and others in a garden were “underweight”.

Despite all of this neither Tondo nor Campbell were banned from keeping animals an outcome with the Scottish SPCA greeted with disappointment.

An undercover special investigation unit (SIU) inspector said: “Whilst we welcome and respect the court’s judgment, we would have liked to see Tondo given a ban on owning or keeping animals. His disregard for the welfare of numerous dogs led to several puppies becoming unwell and, in two sorry cases, passing away.

“We became aware of Tondo and Campbell following reports by concerned members of the public who had purchased puppies from them that had subsequently become very ill and, sadly in two instances, passed away.

“Working on intelligence we were able to determine that both of the accused were supplied puppies from an unidentified puppy dealer, but failed to keep any form of register of sales carried out.

“Our investigation led us to the home of Campbell. With a warrant, we discovered evidence to support that they were selling puppies on behalf of a third party without the appropriate licence.

“The pups have come from suspected puppy dealers. These people are driven by profit and often have no regard for animal welfare.”

The inspector added: “The puppies were suffering from a number of serious health problems including worm and flea infestations, parvovirus and coccidiosis, a parasitic infestation. Tondo’s failure to provide veterinary care for these animals would have led to immeasurable suffering.

“Not only did they put the dogs in their care at risk but due to the contagious nature of the diseases the puppies had, they put domestic dogs in Scotland at great risk.

“This has been heart-breaking for the families who bought the puppies from the couple. Not only did it result in large veterinary bills, but also a lot of stress and heartache.

“Tondo has overlooked the most basic welfare standards in order that they can profit at the expense of these animals.

“This case shows that not only are we targeting puppy farmers but we are also taking on those buying puppies from dealers with successful results. This is a reminder that we will not overlook anyone involved in this barbaric trade.”

Sentencing: Marco Tondo was ordered to carry out 270 hours of unpaid work in the community while Nadine Campbell was tagged for three months for selling the pups from her home address without a licence. No ban on keeping animals was imposed on either of them.

Glasgow Evening Times
BBC News

Pinehurst, Swindon, Wiltshire: Clive Elliott

#TheList greyhound breeder/trainer Clive Donald Elliott, born 19/11/1979, of 35 Limes Avenue, Swindon SN2 1QQ – convicted of multiple counts of cruelty towards dogs in his care

Clive Elliott

Clive Elliott binged on drink and drugs while his dogs starved in kennels at the home he now shares with his mother. When police and an RSPCA officer visited the property they found one dog stuffed in a freezer, two others dead on the floor and other animals starved.

The greyhound trainer and breeder, who had inherited a number of dogs from his late father, left the animals unfed for around four days.

 The shocking conditions some of Clive Elliott’s greyhounds were found in

The shocking conditions some of Clive Elliott’s greyhounds were found in

But a vet who examined the stricken animals after they were rescued from their kennel suggested the dogs had been subject to weeks or possibly months of neglect.

RSPCA prosecutor Matthew Knight said officers had found eight dogs. Three were dead, including one that had been put into a bin liner and stuffed into a chest freezer.

“There was no dog food whatsoever in the property,” the solicitor said.

The five other dogs were in a poor condition. Their nails were overgrown, some had abscesses and scurvy.

An abscess on the leg of one dog
An abscess on the leg of one dog

One of the animals had a severe mouth ulcer, which Elliott later admitted knowing about. The dog initially wolfed down food but died a week later after his condition deteriorated.

Autopsies were carried out on the dead dogs. The bone marrow of one was a glutinous liquid – the result of poor nutrition. The vet said it would have taken weeks or possibly months to reach that stage.

As an example of how poorly nourished the greyhounds were, Mr Knight said one dog had increased in weight by a third in just one month after it was taken from the house. He said: “The vet puts this purely down to providing the proper food.”

Interviewed by the authorities, Elliott said matters had deteriorated after the breakdown of a relationship. He had turned to drink and drugs and did not ask for help as he was “too proud”.

Shameless dog killer: Clive Elliott pictured outside court
Shameless dog killer: Clive Elliott pictured outside court

He told the RSPCA his mother, who has dementia, would have fed them had there been any dog food. He added: “There wasn’t any food for my mum that’s how low I was.”

The dogs Elliott was accused of having neglected were racing as recently as January 2019. Racing cards suggest Gemstone Bobbie, who added a third to his body weight after being rescued, was at the Swindon track twice that month. “C D Elliott” was the trainer

Elliott’s lawyer Terry McCarthy of Jeary & Lewis Solicitors said his client had inherited dogs after the death of his father in 2014.

He had owned his own printing business and was looking after the dogs on the side. He changed jobs, working night shifts and caring for the animals during the day.

He found he was not coping well and, when his relationship broke down, matters spiralled.

“Things went wrong there and Mr Elliott was affected by the breakdown,” Mr McCarthy said.

“It seems some dogs were removed from him by someone his ex-partner met and the problems with the breakdown and the lack of income got in top of him.

Shameless dog killer: Clive Elliott pictured outside court

“There is reference to the back problem you have heard about for which he has been prescribed medication.”

Elliott had been abusing prescription medication on top of that. “It’s my feeling that Mr Elliott was suffering at the time from severe depression. It’s unfortunate that he didn’t go and see a doctor and there is no medical evidence to confirm it.

“It’s quite obvious that as a result of that depression he wasn’t coping with anything.

“You’ve read in the report he couldn’t bring himself to look after his mother properly – as well as his dogs.

“Some of the dogs I think you’ve heard about were owned by another person. That person did not provide food for them either.

“Mr Elliott had no money.”

Chairman of the bench Jane Durrant said Elliott had shown no evidence of remorse.

“The pictures we have been shown are extremely distressing and the number of dogs and the level of suffering they endured is really quite appalling,” she said.

“The distress caused to these dogs was just quite unbelievable.”

Elliott did not appear to react as the sentence was read out.

Sentencing: 20 weeks’ imprisonment. Ordered to pay a total of £872 costs and charges. Banned from owning dogs for life.

Swindon Advertiser

Bettws, Newport: Jayde Ross

#TheList Jayde Melanie Ross (aka Jayde Davies), born c. 1993, of Monnow Way, Bettws, Newport NP20 – left two bearded dragons in an abandoned property

Jayde Ross from Bettws, Newport, Wales, was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.
Jayde Ross was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.

Jayde Ross pleaded guilty to two animal welfare offences after leaving two bearded dragons in an empty property without appropriate heat, light, food or water. Very sadly, one of the animals perished.

The RSPCA was contacted after the bearded dragons – one male, and one female – were found abandoned at the property, “in a shocking state”.

One was severely emaciated while the other had suspected renal disease, parasitic infections and conjunctivitis.

The reptiles have complex needs, including a high requirement for heat and UVB lighting.

The RSPCA said the lizards’ condition suggested they had been without necessary food and water for some time.

Jayde Ross from Bettws, Newport, Wales. was banned from keeping all animals for three years after leaving two bearded dragons in an abandoned property.

One of the bearded dragons had to be put to sleep due to the extent of his injuries, while the other was transferred to a specialist wildlife centre for rehoming.

Sophie Daniels, RSPCA Inspector, said: “We found these poor bearded dragons in a shocking state – with one barely moving as a consequence of her condition; and both appearing very lethargic, depressed and with their bones prominent.

“Bearded dragons have very complex needs – and Wales’ cool climate means heating facilities are essential. Leaving these animals without heat placed them in grave danger, and it beggars belief that more effort had not been made to retrieve these animals or make sure they were safe after the tenant left the property.

“Owning pets is a privilege – but what we saw here was a derelict of duty that sadly resulted in one bearded dragon losing his life; and another suffering unnecessarily for a prolonged period of time.

“Thankfully, it wasn’t too late for the other lizard – but this sad case is a stark reminder as to the complex needs these animals have; and the responsibilities of owners to meet those needs.”

Sentencing: ordered to pay a total of £821 in fines, costs and charges. Banned from keeping animals for just three years.

ITV News

Glasgow: Chris Sillars

#TheList greyhound trainer Chris Sillars, based in the West of Scotland (further info to follow)

The Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB) has banned trainer Chris Sillars from racing after neglecting a dog so badly she had to be euthanised. A legal prosecution case may now follow.

A kennel inspector who discovered the emaciated black greyhound bitch, Dudleys Forever, said it was “the worst condition of a greyhound I have seen”.

The dog, who originally raced in Ireland before being exported to Scotland, weighed just over 16kg, with a body score of 1/5, and was put down by a vet a few hours later.

An inquiry by the disciplinary committee of the GBGB was held in December 2019 and found that Sillars had breached animal welfare rules.

A GBGB report said a steward at Glasgow’s Shawfield Stadium, Alex McTaggart, made a routine visit to Sillars’ kennels on 2 September 2019. Mr McTaggart reported that one kennel block had nine greyhounds and there were four greyhounds in another non-registered block previously deemed unusable.

The GBGB’s report said: “One of these dogs, Dudleys Forever, a black bitch that had last raced at Shawfield on 24 November 2018, was in such poor condition that Mr McTaggart described it as ‘the worst condition of a greyhound I have seen’.

Video evidence was presented to the committee. Mr McTaggart said that in his opinion this was a matter of animal cruelty.

“Mr McTaggart said that on the same afternoon as his visit, he had spoken by telephone to Mr Sillars who had informed him that Dudleys Forever was eating well, and had been to the vet two months previously. Mr McTaggart told Mr Sillars that the bitch needed to see a vet as a matter of urgency.

The report continued: “Mr Sillars complied and took the greyhound to Abbey Vet Group later that day. The veterinary report was given in evidence and stated that the bitch weighed 16.3 kg with a body condition score of 1/5. Further tests were not undertaken, and the bitch was euthanased.”

The committee was told that the following day McTaggart met Sillars who accepted it was not true that Dudleys Forever had been seen by a vet recently. The dog had last been seen by a vet on 2 December 2018 – 10 months earlier.

The GBGB’s disciplinary committee viewed this as “a clear case of animal abuse” and moved to ban Sillars from racing.

The GBGB report concluded: “The distressing video clip endorsed the opinion of a highly experienced stipendiary steward that this was the worst condition of a greyhound he had ever seen, and the committee concurred. The committee deplored the neglect of this greyhound and concluded that Mr Sillars had treated the greyhound with cruelty and in such a manner as to cause the greyhound unnecessary suffering.

“The deliberate decision of Mr Sillars not to seek veterinary attention was wholly unacceptable. The committee considered the offence to be a prima facie breach of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006 and urged the GBGB to send the details of the case to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Edinburgh.”

Say No To Greyhound Racing In Scotland said: “The treatment of racing greyhounds in Scotland is absolutely appalling and this trainer must be prosecuted and feel the full force of the law. We would also like to see criminal prosecutions where greyhounds are doped with Class A and human prescription drugs.

“To date there have been no prosecutions in Scotland with 14 GBGB confirmed doping cases in the last two years at Shawfield track in Glasgow which includes five for cocaine. We will continue to campaign for as long as it takes to shut this disgraceful industry down in Scotland.”

A spokesperson for GBGB, said: “We have the highest expectations of welfare and care in our sport so there is no place in it for trainers like Mr Sillars. This was a clear case of animal neglect and cruelty and the independent disciplinary committee has rightly decided to remove Mr Sillars’ licence, ensuring that he is never allowed to participate in our sport again.”

Reporters from The Ferret asked to see the video evidence presented to GBGB but it declined to release it.

The Ferret reported in October 2019 that dozens of greyhounds at Shawfield had been doped. Steroids, beta-blockers and prohormones – used by bodybuilders – were among other prohibited substances found in the bloodstreams of greyhounds at the Glasgow stadium since 2009.

Five of the 28 positive tests at Shawfield – Scotland’s only licensed track – involved cocaine, which is potentially fatal for dogs and can lead to seizures, strokes and heart attacks.

As well as those incidents, a trainer based in Edinburgh who races in England had three dogs tested positive for banned substances.

Source: The Ferret