A man from Paisley has been handed a 10-year ban on keeping animals and an unpaid work order following a Scottish SPCA investigation for failing to seek veterinary treatment for his 16-year-old collie cross, Jess, when she broke her leg in a road traffic accident.
59-year-old Robert Clark of Canal Terrace, Paisley pled guilty to causing Jess unnecessary suffering for failing to provide veterinary treatment for her injuries.
Inspector Gillian Dick responded to a complaint from a concerned member of the public on the evening of 15 May 2020 who had called our animal helpline to report that Jess’s paw was sitting at a strange angle and she was unable to bear weight on it.
Inspector Dick said, “We were aware of Mr Clark and had previous contact with him several times when we’d advised him about caring for Jess and helped him to arrange veterinary treatments.
“I was unable to attend the property that evening but I called Mr Clark who confirmed Jess had been involved in a road accident on 10 May and he had been treating her leg himself.
“I advised Mr Clark he needed to seek immediate veterinary treatment for Jess and provided him with the contact details for local vets.
“The next day I attended the property to follow up with Mr Clark only to find he had once again failed to seek any veterinary treatment for Jess.
“When I saw Jess it was immediately obvious that she could not bear weight on her front left leg. The leg and paw appeared twisted to the left and the dog’s leg was swollen and warm. Jess showed signs of discomfort and pain while I was examining her and yelped when the leg was touched. She was clearly being caused a significant amount of pain and suffering from her injuries.
“At this point I was extremely concerned for Jess’s welfare so I removed her immediately to be examined by a veterinarian.
“On examination it was found Jess had fractures of all four metacarpal bones.
“Jess weighed just 14.9kg and her coat was also very matted. Once she had been clipped it became even more obvious how underweight she was.
“The combination of her advanced age and severely broken leg meant that her quality of life would be limited and the difficult decision was made to put her to sleep.
“We’re pleased that Mr Clark has been banned from owning animals for 10 years.
“It’s very disappointing and highly irresponsible that, despite being given details of where he could get help, Clark still chose not to get treatment for his dog. There is a veterinary practice situated almost directly across the road from the property.
“Any responsible person would have taken their dog to veterinary surgeon immediately for injuries that were so obvious and clearly painful.
“The suffering caused to Jess was completely unnecessary and could have been avoided had Clark sought appropriate veterinary treatment.”
If anyone is concerned about an animal, they can contact the Scottish SPCA’s confidential animal helpline on 03000 999 999.