An elderly Donegal farmer has been banned from keeping dogs for 10 years after being found guilty of cruelty.
77 year old pensioner George Cavanagh of Carrowhugh, Greencastle pleaded guilty to two charges of cruelty.
Cavanagh, who once had 26 dogs at his farm, was also fined a total of €500 and given six months to pay.
ISPCA Inspector Kevin McGinley told Carndonagh District Court today how he also found three dead dogs at the farm.
Other dogs had been tied to farm machinery while two dogs were living in abandoned machinery with layers of foul-smelling faeces inside.
Inspector McGinley had called to the farm in September 2010 and warned Cavanagh about the conditions his animals were being kept in.
However, when he returned again four months later, he was alarmed when no improvements had been made.
The carcasses of three dogs, including one which had been half-eaten by vermin, was just yards from Cavanagh’s home.
“I asked Mr Cavanagh three times to sign over the vast majority of his dogs to the care of the ISPCA but he did not agree with this course of action,” said Inspector McGinley.
A vet was called the following day and he found animals living in the same horrific conditions with many not having access to drinking water or clean conditions.
Inspector McGinley again cautioned Cavanagh to reduce the amount of dogs and improve their living conditions.
Inspector McGinley said “We visited this man on a number of occasions and warned him about reducing the numbers of animals and also about improving their living conditions.
“Some of the dogs may have appeared to have been in reasonable conditions but the conditions they were being kept in was just horrific,” he said.
A total of fourteen charges had been brought against Cavanagh but seven were withdrawn while another five were taken into consideration by Judge Paul Kelly.
Judge Kelly labeled the case as “appalling” and said it was the worst he had seen in the area in his time as a judge.