Glasgow & West Scotland

Pair banned from keeping dogs

Injured dogs
Image caption The dogs were found living in poor conditions with no water available

Two Lanarkshire women have been banned from keeping dogs for three years.

Following an SSPCA investigation, 10 toy poodles and four French bulldogs were discovered at their property in Carluke.

The dogs were found in August last year living in filthy, cramped cages stacked on top of each other.

At Lanark, Sheriff Court, Fiona and Grace Harkness, of Carluke, pleaded guilty to causing their dogs unnecessary suffering.

The dogs were found with little drinking water and their coats were covered in faeces and urine.

Many of the poodles were also found severely matted as a result of the living conditions.

Both rooms were reported to have an overpowering stench of ammonia and the cages looked to have not been cleaned regularly.

Too weak

The oldest dog, Luxy, was severely underweight, had badly infected eyes and was suffering from advanced dental disease, causing him a great deal of pain.

The SSPCA said his condition had deteriorated to such an extent that he was too weak for surgery and had to be put to sleep.

Fiona Harkness, 38, and Grace Harkness , 71, were ordered by the court to give up ownership of the remaining 13 dogs, which were seized by the SSPCA.

They will remain in the charity's care until they are found suitable new homes.

Image caption The cages in which the dogs were kept for long periods of time

Gross neglect

SSPCA Inspector Gillian Dick said: "Eight dogs were kept in one room and six in another in small cages for long periods of time which resulted in them having to stand or lie in their own excrement.

"We were shown to an outdoor area where the dogs were let out but the ground was covered in hazardous debris and bowls contained water which had turned green.

"The owners have been involved in showing their dogs at championship level therefore they should be well aware of basic welfare and hygiene standards required by good practice.

"We welcome the three year ban given to Fiona and Grace Harkness, however, in our opinion a life ban on keeping animals would have been an appropriate punishment as we believe they are unfit to provide animals with the proper care and attention they need."

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