Dog left to suffer from painful eye and skin condition just weeks after choking attack

Molly the Shih Tzu after being nursed back to health.
Molly the Shih Tzu after being nursed back to health.
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A dog was left to suffer from a painful eye and skin condition just weeks after being violently choked.

Four-year-old Shih Tzu Molly had been removed from the address where the violence took place after police and RSPCA investigated the incident, Sunderland magistrates heard.

Molly was left with a painful eye condition.

Molly was left with a painful eye condition.

But when the pet became ill with a painful skin and eye condition, owner Alisha Healey, 25, failed to take it to the vet.

The 25-year-old, of no fixed address has now been fined £60 and was from keeping animals for five years, after she admitted causing unnecessary suffering to Molly.

RSPCA prosecutor Judith Curry said the organisation had first become involved with Molly in July.

“An incident had been reported, whereby Molly had been choked,” Ms Curry said. “It was a violent attack that had gone on within the home.”

The mats were so attached to the skin it had become ulcerated. The epidermis had eroded, with sores under both eyes. It is the vet’s opinion that Molly was caused unnecessary suffering over a number of weeks

Judith Curry, prosecuting for the RSPCA

On September 30, the RSPCA got a call about a dog in a ‘very poor condition’ and an inspector attended an address in Sunderland, where the tan and white pet was found.

“She had long fur and a very strong smell was coming from her,” Ms Curry said. “She was covered in numerous small matts of fur, all over her face and the underside of her belly. She had a dry, crusty discharge coming from her eyes and her eyes were cloudy.”

The dog was taken to the vets.

“Molly had difficulty seeing where she was going and was sniffing the floor to see where she was going, due to the amount of discharge from her eyes.

Molly's owner has been banned from keeping animals for five years for causing unnecessary suffering.

Molly's owner has been banned from keeping animals for five years for causing unnecessary suffering.

“This caused a mass across the eyes, causing problems with vision. She was rubbing her face and eyes on anything, due to the itching.

“The mats were so attached to the skin it had become ulcerated. The epidermis had eroded, with sores under both eyes.

“It is the vet’s opinion that Molly was caused unnecessary suffering over a number of weeks.”

Healey was also told to pay £20 victim surcharge and £50 costs. She will be unable to appeal the disqualification for three years.

When Healey was interviewed by RSPCA inspectors, she had not taken Molly to the vets for a number of years.

“She said she couldn’t afford the vet but had tried to put some drops in her eyes that she got from the pet shop,” proscutor Judith Curry said, adding that the dog was voluntarily signed over by Healey and has since been rehomed after being nursed back to health.

Gerry Armstrong, defending, said: “The initial alert to the RSPCA was not through any actions of this defendant and the RSPCA fully accept that. That, perhaps was a time to ask for help.”

Mr Armstrong said Healey had ended up in hospital in an induced coma, and on her discharge was unable to cope with Molly.

“I don’t think anyone would say that she isn’t somebody who loved that dog and cared for that dog.

“She accepts she struggles to look after herself and is not opposed to the RSPCA’s application for a disqualification.

“Although Molly has suffered, she has recovered. Alisha has suffered but hasn’t yet recovered and has a long way to go yet.”