Pensioner banned from keeping animals for life

PUBLISHED: 12:30 01 November 2007 | UPDATED: 20:12 01 June 2010

Timmy, the Jack Russell terrier, pictured shortly after RSPCA inspectors visited Wilfred Hopkins’ Friday Bridge home.

Timmy, the Jack Russell terrier, pictured shortly after RSPCA inspectors visited Wilfred Hopkins' Friday Bridge home.

A PENSIONER who failed to take his dog to the vet when it scratched away almost all its fur has been banned from keeping all animals for the rest of his life. Wilfred Hopkins Jack Russell terrier was infested with mange mites, its claws were an inch long

A PENSIONER who failed to take his dog to the vet when it scratched away almost all its fur has been banned from keeping all animals for the rest of his life.

Wilfred Hopkins' Jack Russell terrier was infested with mange mites, its claws were an inch long and its eyes were exuding puss when an RSPCA inspector was called at Hopkins' home.

Hopkins admitted he had had failed to get any veterinary treatment for the three-year-old dog called Timmy. He told the RSPCA he did not think the dog was suffering, and had simply bought it some shampoo from a pet store.

Fenland magistrates heard about a catalogue of problems suffered by the dog before they decided the dog should be confiscated.

# Its hair loss was between 70 and 80 per cent

# Its remaining hair was extremely sparse

# The dog's skin was ulcerated, oozing discharge, and covered in scratch marks

# Its claws were an inch long

# Both eyes were exuding puss

# His ears were smelly and crusty

# The dog was depressed

# Tests showed sarcoptic mange, a blood infection and anaemia.

Hopkins, 63, of March Road, Friday Bridge, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the dog between June 1 and 29, by failing to provide veterinary treatment.

He told RSPCA Insp Jon Knight he had been using shampoo on the dog for three or four days, but was on the verge of taking him to the vet. He did not think its claws were too long, and thought the puss in its eyes were due to a cold.

Prosecuting for the RSPCA, Sara Young said: "It was obviously inadequate treatment; the dog would not have got better without intervention from the RSPCA."

Since taken into the animal charity's care, Timmy's condition had greatly improved, she said. His coat is growing back and he is now "a much happier dog".

Mitigating, John Clarke said: "He was going to take the dog to the vet, but left it, because he hoped the treatment would solve the problem."

Hopkins failed to cut the dog's claws because it was a difficult job, and did not think its eyes were very bad.

The pensioner was planning to take the dog to the vet after he had finished paying for his cat's Caesarean operation, he added.

Hopkins was ordered to carry out 120 hours' unpaid work, and pay £400 costs to the RSPCA. His other animals will be confiscated, and he cannot apply for the lifetime ban to be lifted for three years.

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XXXX XXXXX: Timmy, the Jack Russell terrier, pictured shortly after RSPCA inspectors visited Wilfred Hopkins' Friday Bridge home.

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