Suspended jail and five-year ban for NI dog owner

An NI woman has been handed a jail term suspended for 18 months plus barred from keeping animals for five years after failing to look after two dogs in her care.

Sheena McCartney, Drumellan Walk, Craigavon was not in court, but legal counsel entered a guilty plea when the case was heard at Craigavon Magistrates on February 2 2020.

Rottweiller was neglected

Rottweiller was neglected

She was convicted on three counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a Rottweiler with an eye condition, failing to comply with an improvement notice requiring her to bring the dog to a vet for treatment, and wilfully neglecting the needs of both Rottweiler and a Lurcher. She was also ordered to pay costs of £84.

Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council pursued the prosecution under the provisions of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011 after completing an investigation, which was initiated by a report from a member of the public who was concerned about the dogs’ welfare.

Ms McCartney initially did not respond to contact from the Council, and when she did, an improvement notice was issued to her requiring her to seek treatment for the Rottweiler’s eye condition.

This was not complied with and due to her lack of co-operation, a warrant to enter her property was secured.

The Animal Welfare Officer subsequently visited Ms McCartney’s property with a vet, who assessed the Rottweiler as suffering and the Lurcher as being likely to suffer given the conditions in which it was being kept.

Both dogs were immediately taken into Council care and later rehomed.

A Council spokesperson said: “The defendant persistently neglected the needs of her dogs’ and flagrantly disregarded animal welfare legislation.”