A KIRKBY alcoholic who kept his half-starved pet dog in a pen described by a vet as ‘slurry consisting of water, excrement and urine’ has been banned from keeping animals for 10 years.
When an RSPCA inspector found Saphi, an American bulldog bitch, he said she was ‘critically under-weight’, with a tucked-in stomach and abdomen and was tip-toeing around the edge of her pen to avoid walking in the sludge.
Mansfield magistrates were told owner David Olphert (41), of Spinney Close, was seen at his window when the inspector called but pretended he was not in.
Prosecutor Brian Osrborn said Saphi, who has since been re-homed, was seized by police on 10th February and taken to a vet.
Mr Orsborn said: “She should have been 28-30 kilos but actually weighed 23 kilos.”
He said between 10th February and 6th May, Saphi was examined three times and re-gained four kilos during that time thanks to proper nutrition.
“The dog was fed and described as eating ravenously and drank lots of water at speed,” said Mr Orsborn.
The court was told Olphert had told his mother Saphi was dead.
“She was shocked to learn the dog was still alive,” Mr Orsborn said.
In mitigation, Deborah Bell said Olphert had cared for the dog prior to this period but after the relationship with his partner broke down he went back to alcohol after not drinking for 10 months.
“The poor dog suffered as a result,” she said. “When they (the RSPCA) attended he was in but chose not to answer the door because he was ashamed and embarrassed.”
Miss Bell said Olphert broke down when he saw photographs of the emaciated animal and was pleased she had been re-homed.
Olphert was disqualified from owning animals for 10 years, ordered to pay £250 court costs and given a 12-month community order with supervision.
He must also undertake six months’ treatment for alcohol misuse.
After the hearing, RSPCA inspector Dave McAdam said: “This sends out a clear message that the courts take these matters very seriously.”