Couple who failed to call in vets to help their ‘extremely malnourished’ German Shepherd after she lost more than half her body weight are banned from keeping animals for 10 years
- Christopher Bloy, 26, and Heather Wray, 25, admitted causing the dog suffering
- The German Shepherd, Cassie, weighed just one stone and 12 pounds
- It was put down when it was brought to vets at the Blue Cross animal hospital
- The breed weighs between four stone 10 pounds and five stone seven pounds
A negligent couple admitted ill-treating their dog after it lost more than half its body weight, and have been banned from keeping animals for 10 years.
Christopher Bloy, 26, and Heather Wray, 25, from Grimsby, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the female German Shepherd dog, Cassie, by failing to investigate the cause of its weight loss between September 10 and November 10.
The dog, which weighed just one stone 12 pounds, was put down when it was taken to the Blue Cross animal hospital. Normally, German Shepherds weigh between four stone 10 pounds and five stone seven pounds.
Cassie, the four to five year old German Shepherd, was put down at Blue Cross animal hospital when it arrived weighing just one stone 12 pounds. Normally, these dogs weigh between four stone 10 pounds and five stone seven pounds
Christopher Bloy, 26, and Heather Wray, 25, from Grimsby, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to their dog Cassie
They also have another dog, that was not neglected and was of normal weight, that will be taken away and rehomed. They have each been ordered to pay £500 costs.
Rachel Taylor, prosecuting for the RSPCA, told Grimsby Magistrates’ Court that the emaciated dog weighed only one stone 12 pounds when it was taken to the Blue Cross animal hospital.
‘There was a real failure to investigate why this dog weighed such a low weight. When it was presented in such a condition that it had to be euthanised,’ said Miss Taylor.
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‘This is a case of real neglect, not a deliberate attempt not to feed a dog. It’s negligence.
‘It’s ill-treatment in that there hasn’t been any veterinary care for a dog that’s clearly emaciated.’
Another dog at the couple’s house had a normal weight and had received food.
Rachel Taylor, prosecuting for the RSPCA said: ‘There was a real failure to investigate why this dog weighed such a low weight. When it was presented in such a condition that it had to be euthanised’
Another dog owned by the pair will be taken away and rehomed. They have each been ordered to pay court costs of £500
‘Cassie was not receiving food,’ said Miss Taylor. ‘Either the other dog was eating it or there was no food put down.
‘The charge is failing to address the loss of weight rather than a deliberate act of cruelty.
‘I can’t say that this is a deliberate case of failing to feed. Certainly, the dog was not sufficiently fed.’
The prosecution did not accept that the dog had an underlying condition because the couple seemed to have been advised by a vet in 2016 that follow-up appointments would be needed. Its weight then was only two stone 11 pounds.
These appointments were never kept, however, and attempts by the veterinary surgery to make contact were unsuccessful.
A post-mortem suggested that there was no underlying reason for the weight loss.
Bloy and mother-of-two Wray both had no previous convictions.
Craig Davy, mitigating, said the other dog was perfectly healthy but was treated in a similar way to Cassie and they claimed that the second dog might have taken some of Cassie’s food.
Grimsby Magistrates’ Court heard that a post-mortem suggested that there was no underlying reason for the weight loss
‘They noticed the weight of Cassie declining in a period of a few weeks,’ said Mr Davy.
‘They should have done more over that period of time. Both were distressed by the fact that Cassie had to be put down.’
The court heard that Bloy claimed because he worked away 60 to 70 hours a week, he did not notice the dog had lost weight. It used to play around in the garden and the first time he realised there was a problem was when the dog collapsed.
Wray had owned the dog since it was a puppy but two years ago, its behaviour changed and it started jumping at shadows and running around obsessively.
They sought help and tried to sort out the problems but the dog would not eat when it was watched.
She admitted that she should have sought advice a lot earlier.
Bloy was also ordered to do 80 hours unpaid work and Wray was given five days’ rehabilitation
A woman who was in court supporting the couple had offered to provide a new home for the other dog.
District judge Daniel Curtis told the couple: ‘Unfortunately, through your neglect, this dog had to be euthanised on the day that it appeared in front of a veterinary surgeon, who took the view, having examined it, that it was extremely malnourished and had been neglected.
‘During that period, you did not do enough to save that dog. You should have looked after it. It’s an obligation that you have.
‘The dog was emaciated in 2016. It was even worse when you presented it at the vet’s in 2018.’
Bloy was given 80 hours unpaid work and Wray was given five days rehabilitation. Both were ordered to pay £500 costs and an £85 victims’ surcharge.
They will not be able to apply for the 10-year ban on keeping animals to be lifted for a minimum of five years.
The RSPCA will decide whether the supporter who was in court is a suitable person to have care of the other dog.
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