Higgins Woman Found Guilty After RSPCA ACT Seized Dog with Chain Embedded in Throat
Higgins resident, Hena Felila, was found guilty last week for failure to take reasonable steps to provide an animal with appropriate treatment for injury and the confinement of an animal in a way that caused injury to an animal.
On the 28th June 2016, the Inspectors were called to Ms Felila’s house after concerns were raised for a large mixed breed dog that was tethered to a tree with no shelter or access to water. The dog was surrendered and was taken to the RSPCA ACT vet clinic for a medical check-up.
Upon examination, the veterinarian found the dog, now named Khan, to be underweight, fly bitten, grazes on his muzzle and scabs on his ears. His most significant injury was a deep wound around his neck, consistent with being tethered inappropriately for a prolonged amount of time. On his throat, a deep and crusty raw wound approximately 4cm deep was found. The chain that was restraining Khan was almost entirely embedded into the tissue.
The biopsy from the wound’s centre indicated extensive scarring, consistent with extensive damage over a period of months. The veterinarian in charge of the Khan’s care described the wound as “grossly contaminated with dirt and hair”. The wound had sawed into the muscle fibres of the neck.
It was concluded that the large wound was immediately apparent to any reasonable person with even cursory contact with the animal. Ms Felila neglected to seek veterinary attention for the injury which resulted from an inappropriate restraint sawing into the tissue of the animal’s neck for an extended period.
Ms Felila agreed with the statement of facts submitted to the court by RSPCA ACT and did not attempt to minimise or justify her behaviour. She was sentenced to one month’s imprisonment, released forthwith upon entering into a good behaviour order for a period of 12 months and a five-year animal ban.
CEO Tammy Ven Dange was relieved by the sentence, “This case shows the horrible side effects when a dog is inappropriately tethered and neglected. We hope that others will avoid pet ownership if this is the way they choose to care for their pets.”
Happily, Khan was adopted late last year.