A man has been banned from keeping animals for ten years after failing to get help for his dog when she broke her leg in a road traffic accident and later had to be put down.
Robert Clark, 59, was also ordered to undertake unpaid work after pleading guilty to causing 16-year-old collie-cross Jess unnecessary suffering by failing to provide veterinary treatment for her injuries.
The Scottish SPCA launched an investigation in May 2020 following a complaint from a concerned member of the public who spotted that Jess’ paw was sitting at a strange angle and was unable to bear any weight on it.
The animal welfare charity contacted Clark, who confirmed that Jess had been involved in a road accident a few days before, but that he had been treating her leg himself.
The Scottish SPCA, which had previously given Clark advice on caring for his pet, was unable to attend at his home in Paisley, Renfrewshire, that night, but told him to seek immediate treatment and provided details of nearby vets.
Inspector Gillian Dick said: “The next day I attended the property to follow up with Mr Clark only to find he had once again failed to seek any veterinary treatment for Jess.
“When I saw Jess it was immediately obvious that she could not bear weight on her front left leg.
“The leg and paw appeared twisted to the left and the dog’s leg was swollen and warm.
“Jess showed signs of discomfort and pain while I was examining her and yelped when the leg was touched.
“She was clearly being caused a significant amount of pain and suffering from her injuries.”
Inspector Dick immediately took Jess into her care and to a vet.
On examination, she was found to have fractures to all four metacarpal bones.
Inspector Dick said: “Jess weighed just 14.9kg and her coat was also very matted.
“Once she had been clipped it became even more obvious how underweight she was.
“The combination of her advanced age and severely broken leg meant that her quality of life would be limited and the difficult decision was made to put her to sleep.”
The Scottish SPCA said it was “pleased” Clark had been banned from owning animals for a decade.
Inspector Dick added: “It’s very disappointing and highly irresponsible that, despite being given details of where he could get help, Clark still chose not to get treatment for his dog.
“There is a veterinary practice situated almost directly across the road from the property.
“Any responsible person would have taken their dog to a veterinary surgeon immediately for injuries that were so obvious and clearly painful.
“The suffering caused to Jess was completely unnecessary and could have been avoided had Clark sought appropriate veterinary treatment.”
If you have any concerns about an animal, call the Scottish SPCA’s confidential helpline on 03000 999 999.
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