Man who neglected dog can keep pets

A DOG owner has been allowed to keep his pet Rottweilers Roxy and Chaos, despite neglecting another animal for at least 10 weeks after his girlfriend left him.

Derby Magistrates were told Andrew Hooper, of Cotmanhay, had been hit hard by the break-up of his first serious relationship, leading to the RSPCA seizing two other dogs he kept at his home in Beauvale Drive.

He pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to one Rottweiler between July 22 and August 5 and was put on a curfew for three months but magistrates decided not to ban him from owning animals meaning he can keep his two remaining dogs.

They asked RSPCA officers to make regular visits to ensure the dogs are well kept.

Presiding magistrate Bob McBlane said: “We are trying to do what is best for the animals. I am concerned about the animals.”

John Last, mitigating, said: “He is extremely concerned having lost his partner, he could now lose his dogs.

“I am concerned whether the loss of the dogs would trigger another decline.”

He said Hooper, 23, started drinking on the fourth anniversary of meeting his partner, who had been with him for four years.

He went to the car park where they used to meet, texted her, became depressed and ended up in hospital after police were called.

Mr Last told the court in Derby: “He was expressing his love for her and his loss of her.”

John Sutcliffe, prosecuting, told magistrates the RSPCA took away an adult Rottweiler which was found underweight while Hooper was in hospital.

This has been found a new home and Hooper also agreed the charity should take a Rottweiler puppy.

He said the RSPCA usually asked for orders banning people from keeping pets if they have been convicted of neglect offences.

But he told them: “They would have no strong views over disqualification and I suggest a compromise. He has looked after these two dogs throughout.”

Costs of £1,960 were declined because of Hooper’s financial position.

Mr Sutcliffe said an RSPCA inspector found one Rottweiler ‘in a poor bodily condition’. Its pelvic bone could be easily seen under its coat.

It weighed 24.5 kilograms but that rose by 42 per cent in ten weeks when it was in the care of the RSPCA.

“The dog was ravenously hungry when offered food. A vet said it had suffered unnecessarily for at least ten weeks,” he said.

Hooper told the inspector he was short of dog food when his partner left and said: “Basically it has been down to money.”

He has now cut down on takeaways, reduced his television subscription and bought cheaper brands of food.