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Dog’s throat cut by $2 collar

Dog’s throat cut by $2 collar

A dog called ‘Gurly’ suffered for months as the cheap, too-tight collar that tethered her to her kennel bit into her neck causing a deep, 15cm-long wound.

As a result of ‘Gurly’s plight, Otara woman Maria Matthews, 30, unemployed, was convicted today in the Manukau District Court of recklessly ill-treating an animal with the result that it is seriously injured or impaired. She was sentenced to four months community detention, disqualified from owning animals for 10 years, and ordered to pay reparations of $500.

On 1 May 2013 an SPCA Auckland Inspector attended the Defendant’s property and examined her tan and white, female, Staffordshire cross breed dog called “Gurly”.

The dog had a very deep and infected wound across its throat. The Defendant claimed she only found the wound when she removed the dog’s collar.

The dog was seized and transported to SPCA Auckland for emergency veterinary treatment. A Veterinarian performed surgery to close the 3cm deep and 15cm long wound across the dog’s throat.

The Veterinarian concluded that the dog had been wearing a collar that was far too small for its neck. As the puppy grew in size with age, the collar cut through the skin and muscular tissue around the neck, causing severe pain and suffering over a long period.

When interviewed the Defendant said she was given ‘Gurly’ as a pup in early February 2013. To control the dog, she had bought a $2 puppy collar and tethered the dog to a kennel. The Defendant claims that as she was a first-time dog owner, she wasn’t aware that you had to change their collars as they grew.

The defendant surrendered ownership of the dog to SPCA Auckland on 8 May 2013.

“This is a classic case of ignorance and neglect that underscores why we discourage people from giving animals as pets, “ says Christine Kalin, CEO SPCA Auckland. “While most people are capable of learning to look after an animal and take responsibility for their health and wellbeing, some people are not – as was sadly the case here.

“This dog’s protracted pain and suffering could easily have been prevented by replacing the collar with a larger one. Clearly this is not rocket science.

“The good news is this dog has now made an excellent recovery and has been successfully rehomed with a loving owner who knows how to care for animals.”


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