MAGISTRATES have banned a couple from owning dogs after a flea-infested Staffordshire bull terrier was found locked in a bathroom.
Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court heard how the dog, Mitzy, was found at Daniel Jackman and Charlene Reed’s home in Forton Road, Gosport, on February 16.
RSPCA inspectors visited or contacted the pair 16 times before the dog was found locked in a toilet with an empty food bowl and a water bowl half-filled with old water.
Piles of faeces and a ‘strong smell’ of urine were found in the bathroom.
Sarah Wheadon, prosecuting for the RSPCA, said Mitzy bounded out of the bathroom when police and inspectors executed the warrant at the home.
Officers had heard the dog scratching at the door.
But upon inspection the dog was found her ‘body condition had deteriorated badly’ since she was last seen on January 18.
The prosecutor said: ‘Her ribs were visible.
‘She had hair loss on her lower tail, back and eye.
‘She had crusty sores and patches on her skin.’
The court heard Jackman, 42, and Reed, 36, both of Forton Road, Gosport, had the dog for up to nine years. Reed was the owner.
Both were convicted in their absence two charges of causing unnecessary suffering to Mitzy between January 18 and February 16, and between January 28 and February 16.
They were also convicted of two charges of failing in a duty to ensure the animal’s welfare between January 28 and February 16.
RSPCA inspectors were forced to go to the police to get a warrant to get into the house after repeatedly visiting.
The charity put tape and advice notes on the door warning they would remove the dog if she was not taken to the vet.
Inspectors had been able to see the dog on January 18, where they noted multiple sores breaking the skin which the dog was scratching at.
The court heard the dog had last been taken to the vet on September 23, 2015 but was never registered.
Sentencing, district judge Carolyn Kenyon imposed a 12-month community order for Reed with a two-month 8pm to 8am curfew and 15 days of rehabilitation activities.
She must pay £125 costs to the RSPCA and an £85 victim surcharge.
The judge imposed an 18-month community order for Jackman, who had previously been banned from having dogs for 12 months, with 100 hours of unpaid work and 25 days of rehabilitation activities.
Jackman, a roofer, also admitted handling stolen goods, fraud and theft of ice cream in relation to using a stolen credit card to pay for nearly £30 worth of goods at The Gosport Convenience Store on July 12. He also admitted failing to surrender to bail on October 13.
The judge handed him a 12-month community order with an extra 25 hours of unpaid work.
He must pay £3.99 compensation for the ice cream, £250 RSPCA prosecution costs, £85 CPS costs, and an £85 victim surcharge.
The judge imposed a deprivation order handing over the dog to the charity, and banned the pair from having dogs for 18 months.
Edward Jackson, for Jackman and Reed, said the pair had ‘buried their heads in the sand’ and were not showing a ‘lack of regard’ to the dog but were in a ‘chaotic’ family situation at the time.