independent

Saturday 20 September 2014

Man (80) banned from keeping dogs for 'horrific' cruelty

MARIA HERLIHY

Published 10/10/2013 | 05:26

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A JUDGE has banned an 80 year old man from ever again having dogs and issued a bench warrant for his arrest after dead and emaciated dogs were found chained to a railing on his property.

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A JUDGE has banned an 80 year old man from ever again having dogs and issued a bench warrant for his arrest after dead and emaciated dogs were found chained to a railing on his property.

Andrew Doherty of Rowels, Meelin was not in court last week and Judge Brian Sheridan issued strict instructions to solicitor Charlie O'Connor to have his elderly client in court.

Mr O'Connor told the judge he had personally notified Mr Doherty to be in court - but he again failed to turn up this week.

At Mallow court last week, Judge Sheridan heard that a dead dog tied to a railing was found on Mr Doherty's property along with others which were dead and emaciated on February 22, 2013.

Mr Doherty was facing charges of animal cruelty, as well as permitting carcases to remain unburied.

However, the State opted not to proceed with these charges and instead wanted the judge to grant an order banning Mr Doherty from having dogs for sale or as pets, and for failing to feed or water his dogs.

Mr O'Connor said his client was elderly and entered a plea of guilty on his behalf.

At that sitting, ISPCA inspector Lisa O'Donovan told how she had inspected Mr Doherty's property following a complaint.

"He told me there was nothing really wrong with it. I found three collies on chains and one was dead and chained up to a railing," she said. She described another collie as being semi decomposed and another being even more decomposed.

She said she asked Mr Doherty if he had any further dogs on his property and he told her he didn't. However, she said 50 yards from away she found a shed boarded up. Inside, she found three more living collies along with one dead dog.

"He turned to me and said that it was virus that had got to them, and that he had called a vet, but he couldn't recall the name," she said.

Ms O'Donovan said subsequent veterinary testing showed all the dogs were severely underweight, with one a quarter of the recommended weight.

Inspector Tony Sugrue said of all the animal cases he had dealt with in his career this was by far "the most graphic and horrific case". However, he said he was aware of the circumstances of the defendant, which he described as being poor.

"I want this man here in court. I want him here. This is unbelievably serious," Judge Sheridan said last week.

"I know a 93 year old who is driving every day and my neighbour is 100 years old and goes walking every day. I won't form my final opinion until I see him. But I want him here in this court."

However, Mr Doherty failed to appear this Tuesday and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.

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