Shocking neglect of puppy has owners banned for 10 yrs
"HEARTBREAKING" - that was the word Maryborough Magistrate John Smith used to describe the photos of a female puppy that was almost starved to death by its owners, mother and son Kathleen Maslen and Jeremy Hill.
The two appeared before Maryborough Magistrates Court and pleaded guilty to two charges of breaching a duty of care to an animal.
Maslen and Hill were both sentenced to three months in prison, wholly suspended for an operational period of three years, and banned from owning an animal for 10 years.
Severely malnourished, suffering a severe case of mange and a secondary infection, the female labrador-cross named Chaise was near death when her condition became known to the RSPCA.
The dog was taken to the vet after RSPCA inspector Penny Flaherty visited the home with the assistance of police.
The court heard Hill and Maslen were abusive toward Ms Flaherty and police when they arrived at their home.
When the puppy was seized, the dog was so thin that its ribs and spine could be clearly seen, the court was told.
Solicitor Fiona Terrell, appearing on behalf of the RSPCA, said the puppy also had a severe case of mange and a secondary infection because of its malnourishment.
The dog had suffered significant hair loss because of the mange and was bleeding from sores all over its body.
When Chaise was taken to the vet, the full extent of her condition became known.
Chaise was suffering from life-threatening malnutrition and infection and was so lethargic she had to be hand fed and could not get up and move around.
After being treated by a Maryborough vet, Chaise was moved to a vet in Bundaberg where her condition continued to deteriorate.
Ms Terrell said veterinary staff at the clinic was unsure as to whether Chaise would survive.
But after a lot of care, Chaise eventually regained her health.
Mr Smith described the accused's inaction in ensuring the health of the dog as "deplorable, inconsiderate, cruel and uncaring".
"You both turned a blind eye," he said.
In addition to the custodial sentence, Hill and Maslen were each fined $2699.40.