Dog died after swallowing net

A GAINSBOROUGH woman whose dog died after swallowing a string meat net has been banned from having animals for two years.

Tara Jakes, 39, appeared at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court last Wednesday.

She admitted causing unnecessary suffering by failing to get veterinary care for her German Shepherd, Marley.

An RSPCA inspector found the female dog’s emaciated body in the back yard of Jakes’ Theaker Avenue home on 24th February this year.

Jakes was living there with her five children and another dog, Marley’s mother, Shadow, which was found to be in a healthy condition.

Jakes admitted wanting to take Marley to the vet, but could not afford it.

“There appeared to be no body fat on the dog at all, and you could feel his ribs and spine,” said Alex Rynn, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA.

“Miss Jakes said Marley had been running around the garden as normal that morning,” said Mr Rynn.

She also claimed Marley had ‘always been thin’, but admitted that more recently she should have gone to the vet.

In interview she said: “I know I should have, but she was eating a lot so I thought she would put the weight back on.”

Insp Scotcher said there was ‘ample’ food in the cupboards.

A post mortem found Marley’s small intestine had been blocked by a string meat net, for around three days. It is likely this caused severe vomiting and dehydration and emaciation, leading to the dog’s death.

Defending, Mark Wood said: “This was not deliberate neglect. It is more a case of ignorance - burying her head in the sand and hoping the problem would go away.”

Mr Wood said cost had been a factor for Jakes, who is on benefits. “She is a single mother of five children aged one to 17 and money is extremely tight,” he said.

“She held on a bit longer to see if there was an improvement. She knows she should have gone to the vet.”

“But she did not know about the net, or that she had been vomiting.”

Sentencing Jakes, magistrate Mrs Ann Dickinson said: “We really feel if you had been feeding the dog for the last three days in that small back yard, you must have known she had been vomiting all her food up.”

Jakes was banned from owning or keeping animals for two years, fined £75 and must pay £100 court costs.