Leeds man faces 12-year animal ban after shocking find
A man from Leeds has been banned from keeping any animals for 12 years and given a suspended prison sentence after being convicted of six allegations under the Animal Welfare Act.
David Hinde of Main Street, Aberford, appeared before Leeds Magistrates’ Court on 13 February and was convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to a bay pony called Fred by failing to treat him, causing unnecessary suffering to two individual pedigree cats, and failing to meet the needs of 52 pedigree cats.
The RSPCA was contacted after Fred was put to sleep on veterinary advice where he was being grazed in Preston, and four other ponies were transported from the same location.
Fred was collapsed, and emaciated.
Ear mite infestation
An Animal Welfare Act warrant was executed at Hinde’s address in October 2012 and a mobile phone, horse passports and paperwork, including a knackerman’s invoice relating to the removal of Fred’s body, were seized.
Whilst on site concerns were raised about cats being bred and sold for commercial gain at the premises, all of them pedigree British Shorthaired cats.
52 of the cats were found to have an infestation of ear mites, which caused them suffering.
Hinde was sentenced to 20 weeks custody, suspended for 12 months. He was banned from keeping any animals for 12 years.
Cynthia, his mother, and Raymond, his father, both of the same address, were also sentenced after being convicted of six allegations in their absence.
One of the convictions was for causing unnecessary suffering to 52 cats by failing to seek veterinary treatment for ear mites; two were for failing to meet the needs of the same 52 cats; one was for causing unnecessary suffering to a cat with untreated dental disease and the other two were in relation to the two cats who had gingivitis.
They were both banned from keeping all animals, except dogs, for five years, and fined £500 each payable at £10 each per month.
“So thin that he had collapsed”
RSPCA inspector Nick Welch said: “The suffering endured by Fred, the pony in this case, who was so thin that he had collapsed and was unable to stand, is inexcusable in any arena, but is aggravated by the previous convictions of this defendant. Sadly Fred did not respond to veterinary intervention and had to be put to sleep to end his suffering.
“The cats were in a sorry state, the contrast between how they were then and how they are now is unbelievable.”
The Hinde’s refused to sign over any of the cats to the RSPCA until the verdicts were announced on 13 February.
Efforts to rehome the cats are now underway via RSPCA branches and Cats Protection.