A local man has been disqualified from keeping animals for life after leaving his pet dog with a horrendous tumour hanging off his bottom jaw.
Victor Stokes aged 54 of Devon Road, Rubery, was convicted and sentenced at Birmingham Magistrates’ Court on Monday (31 October) for causing unnecessary suffering to his English bull terrier, Lenny, by failing to seek treatment for the tumour and his weight loss, as well as failing to provide a suitable environment for the dog.
He was convicted, under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, and sentenced to a total of 10 weeks in prison and was also disqualified from keeping all animals for the rest of his life.
RSPCA Inspector Boris Lasserre was called to Mr Stokes’ property in May after reports of a dog in an emaciated state with a large growth on his face.
He said: “Lenny was being kept in the hallway of a property with a dirty, damp duvet in a dog cage as his bed.
“The stench of rotting flesh from the untreated tumour hit you as soon as you walked into the house and the hallway stank of urine and faeces from where Lenny had been confined.”
The 10-year-old dog was rushed to an independent vet but had to be put to sleep to end his suffering.
Inspector Lasserre added: “The x-rays showed how part of Lenny’s lower jawbone had been disintegrated by this huge, invasive tumour.
“Lenny was in an awful condition and weighed just 12.7kg – half of what an adult, male dog of this breed should weigh. He was also severely dehydrated.
“He had ulcers and wounds on his legs and chest from where he’d been lying in unsuitable conditions.
“Mr Stokes explained to the court that he had not taken the dog to a vet because he knew Lenny would be euthanased, and could not bring himself to do it.
“This dreadful case shows the importance of checking your pet’s health regularly and seeking veterinary treatment the moment you think something is wrong.
“There is no doubt that Lenny could have been spared months of suffering if he’d been taken to a vet. It is never an easy decision to make to have your pet put to sleep when the time comes but, to allow suffering to continue for selfish reasons, is inexcusable.”
You can report animal cruelty or an animal in distress on the RSPCA’s 24-hour cruelty line on 0300 1234 999 – Or online here.