Bobby, a West Highland Terrier, was found by a district nurse in a filthy cage under the stairs in a flea infested cupboard during a visit at Yvonne Mcallister’s house.
The Magistrate’s Court in Blackburn was told the dog was in a ‘‘horrible condition and indistinguishable as to what breed it was’. The RSPCA prosecutor Paul Ridehalgh said Bobby’s skin was pink and ears had swelled to twice the size they should be. In addition, Bobby’s paws were overgrown and begun to twist. The court heard how Yvonne McAllister had known about the skin issue Bobby had and had bought shampoo to treat the problem, but hadn’t taken him to the vet. She also bought clippers to trim his nails but Bobby ‘wouldn’t let anyone near him to cut his nails’. Mr Radleigh said during the visit Bobby ‘didn’t lift his head up at all, wag his tail or move’. An RSPCA office attended the property at a later date and said he was ‘unrecognisable to him as a West Highland Terrier’ with grey skin which was ‘leather-like, thick and dry’. The officer said Bobby must have had the skin condition for an ‘extended period of time’ and he was ‘subdued, lethargic and reluctant to move’. When he asked to take Bobby to the vet, Yvonne refused and said she wanted an independent assessment.
Bobby was later taken to the vet and the vet had never seen a dog in such poor condition and he was later put down due to various bacterial infections.
Yvonne McAllister pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering of an animal and received a 12-month community order with 50 hours unpaid work, a three-month curfew, ordered to pay £600 costs and banned from owning or keeping animals for five years.