Case Snapshot
Case ID: 19489
Classification: Neglect / Abandonment
Animal: dog (non pit-bull)
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Saturday, Oct 1, 2011

Disposition: Convicted

Defendant/Suspect: John McGowan

A dog owner has been jailed for "appalling" neglect of his dog which was left alone in a room covered in feces.

John McGowan, 46, was also banned from keeping dogs for three years after he left his Alaskan malamute alone for two days without water.

The eight-year-old dog, called Balto, was alone in a room covered in feces and urine.

McGowan, of Urquhart Road, St Fergus, Peterhead, was jailed for three months at the town's sheriff court on Thursday.

He had previously plead guilty to leaving the dog unattended without making adequate provision for his welfare, and failing to provide a suitable environment for him.

Chief inspector John Carle, of the Scottish SPCA, said: "We are very pleased McGowan has received a jail sentence as well as a ban on keeping dogs as this sends out a strong message that neglecting an animal is an offense and will not be tolerated.

"Poor Balto had been left all alone in appalling conditions and was so thirsty when we found him that he drank four bowls of water without stopping.

"The smell of urine and feces in McGowan's property was overpowering as Balto had been forced to use his home as a toilet.

"Thankfully, Balto no longer has to live a life of misery and we can now find him a loving new home."

Debbie Innes, assistant manager of the charity's centre in Aberdeenshire, said: "Despite Balto's tough start in life, he is a sweet and affectionate boy who leaves a lasting impression on everyone he meets.

"He is such a typical malamute who, as well as representing all that's great about his breed, can demonstrate some of their more challenging quirks.

"We really want to make sure Balto has the best possible life from now on so we are looking for a very experienced and confident owner who can provide him with plenty of outdoor access and lots of exercise."

Anyone interested in rehoming Balto can phone Scottish SPCA on 03000 999 999.


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