A couple have been banned from owning dogs for three years after they failed to get treatment for a seriously injured five-week-old puppy.
Roxy, a tan and brindle female bull terrier type puppy, was found by RPSCA inspectors to be suffering from skin lesions, muzzle abrasions and a fractured rib.
Natalie Long, 23, and Mark Fisher, 29, both of Edgar Street, Accrington, claimed they couldn’t afford to get her properly treated as they couldn’t afford the bills.
RSPCA Inspector Charlotte Brooker said it was ‘the worst case I’ve dealt with in my career’.
Long and Fisher pleaded guilty on the day of trial at Burnley Magistrates Court to two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to Roxy between August 17 and September 7 last year by failing to provide proper and necessary veterinary care for her skin lesions and muzzle abrasions and failing to provide proper and necessary veterinary attention for a fractured rib.
The defendants entered their pleas after the trial had begun in their absence.
Prosecutors withdrew a charge of causing unnecessary suffering to Roxy by inflicting blunt force trauma, physical violence and torture and a separate charge of causing unnecessary suffering against a tri-coloured male cross breed dog called Alfie.
Christopher Wyatt, prosecuting, told the court Inspector Brooker attended the couple’s home in September last year after concerns were raised by a neighbour and Roxy was taken to a veterinary practice in Bury.
Roxy was found to have trouble standing, looked malnourished and scrawny.
Fisher was given a 12-month community order with a 10-week curfew requirement, ordered to pay £300 costs and disqualified from owning animals for three years.
Long was fined £150, ordered to pay £85 costs and disqualified from owning animals for three years.
Speaking after the case, Inspector Brooker said: “I know it sounds like a cliche but this was the worst case I’ve dealt with in my career.
“Roxy is a happy dog but the injuries she suffered whilst she was in the care of Natalie Long and Mark Fisher were life changing, and still affect her.
“I’m just happy that she is now with a loving new family, and that their other dogs soon will be.”<p/>