South Scotland

Overweight dog sheds six stone

Before and after dog Image copyright Scottish SPCA
Image caption Tyko lost nearly six stones after being taken into care by the Scottish SPCA

An overweight dog has shed nearly six stone after its owner was told she was "killing it with kindness".

Tyko, a cross-breed Corgi, was so fat he could only take a couple of steps before becoming breathless and slumping to the ground.

The dog was taken into care by the Scottish SPCA after the owner was prosecuted.

Tyko is now a healthy 12kg (2st). He was 49kg (8st) at his fattest - so has achieved a weight loss of 37kg (81lbs).

The animal welfare charity is now looking for a new home for him.

Tyko's weight had ballooned to double his normal size due to over-feeding and a lack of exercise. His owner's neighbour tipped off the Scottish SPCA.

Vets said they had never seen a dog so obese, adding that it resembled a seal.

Image copyright Scottish SPCA
Image caption The Scottish SPCA is now looking for a new home for Tyko

Owner Denise Leitch was admonished at Selkirk Sheriff Court after being of good behaviour during a year-long period of deferred sentence.

The 60-year-old had bought the dog as a Christmas present for her husband but was the person charged as she was responsible for it.

She pleaded guilty to a charge of failing to provide treatment for a morbidly obese dog.

She admitted causing Tyko unnecessary suffering at her home in Earlston between 1 April and 13 October 2015.

Leitch failed to provide an appropriate diet for the dog which became morbidly obese and failed to provide treatment for its mobility and respiratory conditions.

The offence carries a maximum penalty of 12 months imprisonment, a fine of £20,000 or a disqualification from owning animals.

'Proper treatment'

But Sheriff Derrick McIntyre accepted it was not a normal case of maltreating an animal.

The court heard that a Scottish SPCA officer told Leitch she had been "killing the dog with kindness."

Defence lawyer Natalie Paterson said that Tyko had been "freaked out" by a nearby firework display and rarely ventured out to exercise.

Ms Paterson said: "She has already been punished by losing custody of the dog. It was not intentional for the dog to reach that size but it is accepted she did not seek the proper treatment."

Scottish SPCA centre manager for Edinburgh Diane Aitchison said: "Tyko has lost 37kg after coming into our care weighing a massive 49.5kg.

"He'll need medication for the rest of his life as he has a thyroid problem but he doesn't let it affect him

"He's now looking for an active forever home to keep his fitness up. He loves chasing a ball, but he's not so keen to give it back.

"We feel he would be best suited to an adult-only home without any other dogs or cats."

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites