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A woman in regional South Australia has been banned from keeping pets for five years after failing to groom four cavalier King Charles spaniels, in what the RSPCA described as a “shocking case” of animal neglect.
- The dogs had badly matted fur, infections, ingrown nails and rotten teeth
- All four have since found new homes, the RSPCA said
- Owners have been reminded that some breeds require regular hair care
RSPCA inspectors seized the four maltreated dogs from the owner’s property in May following a tip-off.
The organisation has used the case to remind owners of long-haired dogs about their high care needs.
The RSPCA said the woman pleaded guilty and was convicted in a regional magistrates court last week of 13 counts of ill-treatment of an animal.
She received a three-month suspended prison sentence, with a $500 good behaviour bond for two years.
The magistrate also prohibited the woman from having any animals for five years, the organisation said.
All four dogs suffered from multiple health problems, including severely matted and dreadlocked coats, ear infections, mouth infections and ingrown nails.
Two of the dogs required 20 rotten teeth to be removed.
The nails on one dog were so overgrown they had twisted all the way around, while an overgrown nail on another dog pierced its paw, resulting in an infection.
After months in foster care, all four dogs were adopted into new homes.
RSPCA warns would-be owners
RSPCA South Australia chief veterinarian Dr Brad Ward said the case should serve as a wake-up call to people considering buying a dog with high grooming requirements.
“All dogs require regular washing and grooming to keep their skin and coats healthy, but some breeds have greater grooming needs than others,” Dr Ward said.
“Though they are very attractive dogs, cavalier spaniels definitely fall into that latter category and anyone thinking of getting a long-coated breed like that needs to seriously weigh up the time required for washing, clipping and grooming.”
RSPCA South Australia’s veterinary team has also treated several dogs with grass seeds embedded in their skin, ears and eyes, which can cause permanent loss of hearing and eyesight, as well as serious skin infections.
Dr Ward advised owners against walking dogs in overgrown areas during the summer months and recommended checking animals for grass seeds as part of a regular grooming routine.
Two New South Wales firefighters who were trapped inside their burning trucks during a terrifying ember attack on the state’s South Coast on Tuesday say they are amazed everyone came out alive.
Four crews were on their way to help with the Currowan bushfire and were just south of Nowra when they were caught in a “flashover” and quickly became surrounded by flames.
Deputy Captain Jasper Croft from Station 509 Wyoming said when his truck lit up, the heat was “intense”.
“Everything was alight, both sides of the truck, the top — everything,” Mr Croft said.
“It was like being in an oven,”
Mr Croft said there were moments he did not think his crew would make it.
“When we were in the thick of it we thought this could be it … It was pretty traumatic” he said.
Mr Croft was among 16 firefighters who managed to escape their burning trucks and retreat to safety.
Kayle Barton, who was in another truck which seized and trapped his crew, said he was determined to get everyone out alive.
“My first thought was this is not happening … This is not going to be our last moment,” he said.
Mr Barton said their training “kicked in” and they were able to get out unharmed but their truck was destroyed.
“Every piece of equipment worked exactly as it was intended … Everything worked,” he said
“We’re all amazed.
“Trucks can be replaced … Our crew managed to get out, that’s the most important thing,” he said.
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Fire and Rescue NSW Deputy Commissioner Jeremy Fewtrell said he was “incredibly proud” of the men and thankful they got home safe.
“We were aware of the situation they were in … Collectively, the whole organisation breathed a very large sigh of relief when they managed to get themselves out,” he said.
“The manner in which they got themselves out is a tribute to their professionalism and their capability, great skills but also great presence of mind under incredible pressure.”
“It reflects incredibly well on their training and the equipment that they had to keep them safe,” he said.
The mammoth blaze is almost 230,000 hectares large and has been burning in the Shoalhaven area for more than a month.
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