Sheffield couple banned from owning dogs after their cross-breed was found in '˜appalling condition'

A Sheffield couple whose dog was found in an '˜appalling' state, after they allowed her to suffer with a skin condition for a '˜considerable amount of time' have been banned from owning dogs for five years.Â

Thursday, 20th December 2018, 1:11 pm
Updated Thursday, 20th December 2018, 1:18 pm
This is the condition Sasha was found in

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) first contacted Ashley Cooper and Katy Gordon about their cross-breed dog, Sasha, in 2016, after concerns were raised about her welfare and skin condition, Andy Cash, prosecuting, told Sheffield Magistrates' Court yesterday. 

Mr Cash said the couple initially heeded the RSPCA's advice and took her to the vet, which led to her condition improving. 

Sasha has made a full recovery since being taken into the care of the RSPCA in September this year

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But in September this year, the charity were contacted about Sasha's welfare once again. 

'She was [found to be] very low in weight, and her skin condition was frankly appalling'¦her skin was pustulating,' said Mr Cash, adding: 'It's the Society's case that she was suffering for a considerable amount of time.'


Prosecutor, Andy Cash, described the condition Sasha was found in as 'appalling'


He added: 'Mr Cooper signed the dog over to the Society straight away, and with proper care, the dog has made a full recovery.'

When interviewed, Cooper, 51, and Gordon, 33, both admitted responsibility for Sasha, and described how they could not afford to take her to the vets, so attempted to treat her condition with products they had bought instead. 

'There would have been all sort of alternatives available to them [to help with veterinary care], as I'm sure you will understand,' Mr Cash told  the magistrates.

Sasha was underweight, and is believed to have been suffering with a skin condition for a considerable amount of time when she was taken into the care of the RSPCA

Mr Cash said the couple also owned cats and a Chihuahua dog; and said that while their cats were found to have fleas, there was no evidence of them being mistreated. 

As a result, he asked for them to be banned from owning dogs specifically, which would allow them to keep their cats. 


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Cooper and Gordon, both of Ronksley Road, Shiregreen, were not represented in court. 

When asked if there was anything she would like the magistrates to take into consideration when passing sentence, Gordon said: 'I'm really, really sorry.'

To the same question, Cooper replied: 'I'm really, really sorry about what's happened to Sasha. We have a disabled daughter and the Chihuahua is hers. She suffers from learning difficulties, and it's going to be hard for her to understand where the dog has gone.'

Magistrates sentenced the couple to a community order, banned them from owning dogs for five years and ordered them to pay £185 in costs each. 

As part of the order, Gordon was ordered to complete 15 days of a rehabilitation activity requirement as well as 40 hours of unpaid work, while Cooper was ordered to complete 60 hours of unpaid work.