A Donegal woman has been fined €100 and ordered to pay €725.08 to the ISPCA to cover veterinary costs after she was convicted of failing to provide sufficient food for a Rottweiler dog, which was found emaciated on her property.
Justine Duffy, age 24, of Oakland Heights, Drumkeen, pleaded guilty to one offence under Section 13 of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013, with two offences under Section 12 and another under Section 11 taken into consideration.
The case originated from a call to the ISPCA’s National Animal Cruelty Helpline.
Senior Inspector Kevin Mc Ginley responded and, after multiple visits to the property, he finally made contact with Justine Duffy and was able to view the dog in question on 11th May 2017.
He observed an emaciated female Rottweiler dog with protruding ribs, hips and backbone.
The defendant agreed to surrender the dog, named Titch, and Inspector McGinley immediately transported her to a vet in Letterkenny. On examination the dog was found to weigh only 20.8kg.
Senior Inspector McGinley told Judge Paul Kelly that blood tests were conducted in order to rule out any underlying health issues such as diabetes.
The court was also informed by Inspector McGinley that the dog was in the care of the ISPCA for approximately 20 weeks and that in that time she gained 12 Kgs, more than half of her initial weight.
Inspector Mc Ginley said: “When I saw the dog on this property, I was instantly concerned for her welfare upon observing how thin she was. Pet owners have an obligation to provide sufficient food for their animals, and an obligation to proactively seek advice from a vet if their animal isn’t eating. It was shocking to see someone let their dog get to this state.”
Titch was transferred to the ISPCA National Animal Centre in Longford where she made a full recovery and was rehomed in Co Kildare.