A Cardiff man has been disqualified from keeping all animals after he caused his dog to suffer with a large mammary mass which had become ulcerated and infected.
Aman Kahssay appeared at Cardiff Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 2 August for sentencing.
He previously pleaded guilty to one offence under the Animal Welfare Act in that he caused unnecessary suffering to his Staffordshire bull terrier type dog called Holly, by failing to provide a continuation of vet treatment for a large mammary mass which became ulcerated and infected. He also failed to follow vet advice to euthanase Holly.
At sentencing he was given a suspended prison sentence for 12 weeks suspended for 18 months with a community order of a 20 days rehabilitation activity requirement. He was disqualified from keeping any animals for eight years (which was suspended for 28 days to allow him to rehome any animals) and was ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £154 and costs of £200.
In mitigation the court heard that he had no intention to cause harm and Holly was a loved pet who he didn’t want to put down. It was also said he regretted his actions.
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The court heard a written statement from RSPCA inspector Sophie Daniels who said she had spoken with Mr Kahssay outside his property on 15 June 2022.
When she saw Holly she described her as in “normal body condition and mobile and alert” however on the left underside of her abdomen area was a “large jaffa orange sized mass”.
She said: “It was an open, cavernous mass, with no skin covering half of it and the internal area was pink and had fleshy pockets and a honeycomb appearance. There was no visible discharge and it appeared clean, but there was a smell of infection present. Flies were starting to show interest in the mass whilst the dog was outside.”
A call was made to a vets – and it was confirmed that Holly had last been seen on 2 March 2022 – and euthanasia had been advised on that date, but it could not be carried out without the owner’s permission as Holly had been taken there by neighbours of Mr Kahssay. No contact with the vet had been made since.
Mr Kahssay agreed for inspector Daniels to take Holly to a vet who confirmed that she had “deteriorated and that the tumour was inoperable and that she would be in pain”. He advised euthanasia, but stated that he could not enforce this.
Mr Kahssay, who declined euthanasia, was issued with two weeks worth of palliative treatment for Holly, including pain relief, steroids and antibiotics. It was strongly advised that Holly be euthanized at the end of this period and an appointment was booked. Mr Kahssay was also issued with a RSPCA Warning notice.
The court heard that this appointment was cancelled and although another appointment was later booked he did not attend. RSPCA Daniels left voicemails and made several attempts to speak and see Mr Kahssay but he was not contactable.
On 24 August, a warrant was executed by South Wales Police.
Inspector Daniels said Holly was still in normal body condition but the mass on her underside appeared to her to have “doubled in size”.
She added: “It was still raw, open and fleshy. There was an uneven surface with fatty looking deposits on the surface and it smelled strongly. Her breathing appeared laboured.”
Mr Kahssay agreed to sign a euthanasia consent form for Holly.
Following the court case, RSPCA inspector Sophie Daniels added: “We know that the difficult decision to put a beloved pet to sleep is a distressing time. Our hearts go out to any pet owner who is put in this heartbreaking decision.
“However, it is important to follow veterinary advice and to seek treatment for any issue promptly. A pet who is suffering should not be left in this way, and would urge any owners to seek help.”