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London, July 17 – An Indian-origin man in central England has been sentenced to eight-week prison and ordered to do 80 hours of unpaid work for starving and chaining his dog to the fridge after it gave birth to seven puppies.
Gurminder Singh, 41, was sentenced recently after he pleaded guilty to one offence under the Animal Welfare Act, and banned from keeping dogs for two years, the Coventry Telegraph reported.
The Magistrates’ Court in Coventry heard that an inspector from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), an animal welfare charity in the UK, visited Singh’s property on October 12, 2022.
He found Sasha, a Presa Canario dog, tethered to a freezer by a metal chain, appearing extremely underweight with her spine, ribs and pelvic bones visible.
Her seven young puppies, around three weeks old, were kept close to her in a rusty metal box, the newspaper reported.
The RSPCA inspector took Sasha and her puppies to the charity’s Birmingham Animal Hospital where she was found grossly underweight and was admitted for treatment.
The vet who examined Sasha found her to weigh 25.7 kg, nearly half the 40 kg healthy average for the breed.
“Due to the extent of her poor body condition and the lack of other pre-existing conditions detected on blood work, which may have exacerbated this lack of body condition — it can be confirmed that this dog had been suffering through a process of a lack of appropriate nutrition. The duration of this is approximately three weeks, though likely longer,” the vet said in a statement to the court.
The court heard that within a month of being in the RSPCA’s care, Sasha gained 6 kg in weight.
In mitigation, Singh told the court he was not a bad dog owner and that he had 222 pounds worth of dog food in his fridge which he had been feeding Sasha.
“You are not accepting responsibility, you are not showing any remorse here. I have got to punish you based on what is before me. Whenever the court sentences anyone we have to look at guidelines — putting it simply, this crosses the custody threshold. I am not sending you to prison today though,” the magistrates said in their sentence.
The court imposed an eight-week prison sentence now suspended for 12 months and also asked him to pay 400 pounds costs and a 128 pounds victim surcharge.
The seven puppies have all since been rehomed by the RSPCA.
Sasha has now been renamed Flora and is up for adoption at the charity’s Bryn-y-Maen Animal Centre in Colwyn Bay, Wales.