*Warning this story contains images which some readers may find distressing*
A Vale of Glamorgan woman has been given a community order, curfew and a decade-long ban from keeping animals, after causing her dog prolonged and unnecessary suffering for a period of months, with an RSPCA officer finding the poor animal “unable to stand and in a woeful body condition”
Caroline Tilley (d.o.b 15/02/1978), of South View, Rhoose, pleaded guilty to an Animal Welfare Act offence, and was sentenced at Cardiff Magistrates’ Court last Tuesday (25 September).
An RSPCA Cymru officer arrived at her Rhoose property to find the largely immobile dog – Roxy – collapsed to the ground, only slightly raising her head. The charity had been told she was not eating or drinking properly, and did not move even to urinate. Her body has been described as “skeletal”, and the sorry sight of Roxy’s condition will “forever” live with an RSPCA officer of 11 years standing.
The woman asked the RSPCA to put the animal to sleep three months after vets advised her that the dog’s condition meant euthanasia was sadly necessary. Failure to act from the woman or to ensure necessary veterinary treatment meant the Jack Russell Terrier endured a prolonged, unnecessary period of suffering.
RSPCA Cymru say Ms Tilley’s decision not to help resulted in the dog “needlessly suffering, and being in extreme pain for a long time”. The owner had been advised in March that Roxy needed to be put to sleep, but did not do this, nor arrange further treatment, before then contacting the RSPCA in June.
The district judge labelled the treatment of the dog as “pure cruelty”.
At Cardiff Magistrates’ Court, Tilley was handed a 12-month community order with 20-day rehabilitation activity, and a curfew requirement between the hours of 6pm and 6am for a three-month period. She was disqualified from keeping all animals for a period of ten years, and told to pay costs of £300 and a £85 victim surcharge.
RSPCA inspector Gemma Black said: “This was a hugely upsetting case, and a very sorry but pertinent example of the state an animal can get into if not given appropriate, timely help in their hour of need.
“I found poor Roxy skeletal, unable to stand and in a woeful body condition.
“Her owner’s failure to act resulted in her needlessly suffering, and being in extreme pain for a long time. I have been an RSPCA inspector for 11 years – but the sight of Roxy, barely able to lift her head, and collapsed to the floor will live with me forever.”