A man who allowed his dog to starve to death through neglect has been fined $2000 and disqualified from being in charge of a pet for five years.
Melbourne Magistrates Court today heard Troy Simpson, 30, failed to provide sufficient food for his six-year-old Staffordshire pit bull terrier-cross, Missy, over two weeks in September and October last year.
The officer described the dog as being in a “shocking condition” and in an “extremely emaciated” state, the court heard.
Simpson pleaded guilty to one count of inflicting aggravated cruelty on an animal.
Magistrate Ian Watkins told the court he was sickened by photographs of the dead dog and that Simpson had no excuse for neglecting the animal.
“I couldn’t imagine the pain and suffering that animal went through as it suffered from malnutrition,” he said.
“There is no excuse for neglecting that animal in the way you did.”
Simpson’s defence counsel, who refused to give her first name when approached by The Age and asked that she be referred to as Miss Fischer, conceded in court that Missy died in “nasty circumstances”.
She told the court Simpson had left Missy in his backyard when he moved out of his property and began living with his ill sister, and only checked on the dog at nights.
“He knew she was getting skinnier but the light outside the back wasn’t good and he didn’t want to upset the neighbours,” she said. She told the court Simpson had fallen out with his neighbours.
Miss Fischer told the court Simpson had owned Missy since she was an eight-week-old pup and was worried about her condition, and had planned to buy some food once a Centrelink payment was made.
Simpson was on a pension for an intellectual disability, she said. But the court was told the dog was neglected for a long time.
Inspector Nichols said the veterinarian who examined Missy’s body at the animal hospital found the dog was “severely emaciated” with its bones visible, faecal staining consistent with diarrhoea and that her left eye was ulcerated.
“The veterinarian held the view anyone who would have seen the dog would have realised she needed urgent veterinary attention,” Inspector Nichols said.
Simpson was also ordered to pay $440 in court costs.