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Wednesday 29 November 2023 Dublin: 3°C
jack russells

Wicklow man fined €625 for docking dogs' tails

Garda assistance was required to seize the dogs after the owner became “extremely hostile”.


A WICKLOW MAN has been fined for a number of offences including docking dogs’ tails.

Jason Dunne pleaded guilty to four offences under the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 at Bray District Court yesterday.

He was ordered to pay a €625 contribution to the ISPCA and €625 in state costs.

The case resulted from a visit made to his home by ISPCA chief inspector Conor Dowling and inspector Michael Keane in May 2015, following a tip-off from a website that had flagged an advertisement of puppies for sale with suspected docked tails.

The court heard Dowling observed an adult female Jack Russell Terrier and six-week old puppies with docked tails and, when he spoke to the owner by telephone, the man admitted a veterinary surgeon had not been involved in the tail docking procedure.

Their dewclaws, known as dogs’ thumbs, had also been unlawfully removed from the back of their legs.

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A statement issued by the ISPCA noted that when Dowling told the owner he intended to take possession of the dogs, the man became “extremely hostile”.

The inspectors were forced to leave the property, but returned shortly afterwards with garda assistance. The gardaí were unable to locate the dog and puppies on the property and the owner refused to disclose their location.

Dowling noted the docking of puppies’ tails by laypeople has been an offence under the Animal Health and Welfare Act since March 2014.

“People have to realise that the removal of tails for aesthetic reasons is no longer acceptable and that those who unlawfully perform or organise this painful procedure are liable to be prosecuted.”

The ISPCA encouraged members of the public to report animal welfare concerns by contacting the National Animal Cruelty Helpline on 1890 515 515 or to report it in confidence online.

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