RSPCA slam dog owners after dobermans starved to death
THE message from RSPCA Queensland is simple - if you abuse animals you will be caught and hauled before the courts.
Several people have fronted Ipswich Magistrates Court this week charged with animal cruelty offences after coming to the attention of RSPCA inspectors.
Redbank Plains couple Joshua King, 27, and Tara Underhill, 23, pleaded guilty in Ipswich Magistrates Court to seven counts of breaching a duty of care to an animal.
The court heard their two Dobermans, Chief and Bailey, died of severe starvation after losing nearly half their body weight.
Bailey weighed a mere 13.3kg and Chief 17.6kgs when they died - well below the ideal 30-35kg body weight of a dog their size.
Magistrate Donna MacCallum fined the couple $3800 and banned them from owning any animal for three years.
They were also ordered to surrender their current dog.
Redbank Plains woman April Elizabeth Ellem, 30, also pleaded guilty to six counts of breaching a duty of care to an animal this week.
The court heard Ellem's dogs, Bolt and Spot, were so badly neglected it resulted in severe weight loss and dehydration.
RSPCA inspectors found the two dogs in an emaciated condition, but luckily both dogs were able to be saved and have since been re-homed.
Ellem was fined $2000 and was banned from owning any animals for three years.
RSPCA Queensland spokesman Michael Beatty said in the case of Chief and Bailey the dogs literally died of starvation and neglect.
He said their deaths would have occurred over several weeks and the dogs would have suffered greatly during that time.
"It takes a pretty rotten person to do this to an animal," he said.
"It shows a complete lack of empathy . . . it is disturbing really.
"The community condemns animal cruelty, it is one of the most abhorrent offences in their eyes, and rightly so."
Mr Beatty said the organisation received about 18,000 complaints of animal cruelty and neglect each year.
He said all complaints are followed up on or investigated.