Two men who 'mutilated puppies for cosmetic purposes', subjecting them to 'at least five days of pain', have been fined roughly £250 each and banned from keeping animals.
Leslie Christopherson, 29, and Calum Reid, 36, both from Liverpool, subjected two Bull breed puppies to cruel ear-cropping procedures and admitted at court to causing unnecessary suffering to the dogs.
Liverpool Magistrate's Court heard how a concerned member of the public reported Christopherson to the RSCPA after spotting the mutilated puppies.
The procedure is illegal in the UK and causes great pain as a knife or razor is used to partially chop dogs' ears to make them look fiercer, reports the Liverpool Echo.
RSCPA Inspector Naomi Norris was sent to Christopherson's address on April 29, where he showed her a grey male puppy called Blue and a female puppy called April.
Naomi said: "Both had cropped ears that looked quite freshly done. They were red and sore looking and I could see bits of stitching that just looked like cotton. There was something clumped around the ears, that he later told me was talcum powder and the ears appeared infected.
"He confirmed there had been no veterinary treatment and said: 'I know the ears are illegal, I’m looking after them for a mate'."
He identified Reid as the owner of the puppies.
Both dogs were then seized by police and taken for veterinary treatment at the RSPCA’s Greater Manchester Animal Hospital.
Naomi then visited Reid who said he had bought the dogs with their ears already cropped and told her he didn’t know the procedure was illegal.
An independent vet, who examined Blue and April, told the court: "The tissues of the ear pinna are sensitive and surgical intervention will result in acute inflammation and an experience of pain for the animal.
"In my opinion Blue and April have been caused to suffer as a consequence of having their ears cropped. Suffering will have been experienced by these animals via mechanisms of pain and irritation for a period of at least five days, possibly longer."
Christopherson was fined £200 and forced to pay a £78 victim surcharge, banned from keeping animals for two years and handed a eight-week jail sentence suspended for 12 months.
He was also ordered to do 20 rehabilitation days and 100 hours unpaid work.
Reid was fined £250 and forced to pay a £95 victim surcharge, banned from keeping animals for three years and given a one year community order, in which he must do 120 hours of unpaid work and 30 rehabilitation days.
Naomi explained: "[Ear-cropping] is painful, wholly unnecessary and often done only for the purposes of appearance.
"Dogs should never be mutilated for cosmetic purposes and ear cropping can actually be detrimental to their health, behaviour and welfare."
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