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Dogs 'on brink of death' as almost 30 pets kept in squalor

Elaine Erskine, 58, has been jailed for 14 weeks after neglecting 27 dogs in her Kilmarnock home.

Squalor: German shepherds and Jack Russell has to be put to sleep.
Squalor: German shepherds and Jack Russell has to be put to sleep. Scottish SPCA

A woman has been jailed after two German shepherds were found "on the brink of death" in a bungalow where almost 30 dogs were kept in squalor.

Elaine Erskine, 58, failed to provide adequate nutrition and protection from hazardous materials to 27 dogs in her care at her Kilmarnock home.

Scottish SPCA inspectors found the dogs, called Rosie and Arti, in the faeces strewn property with one unable to lift its own head.

The pair, along with a female Jack Russell Terrier were covered in sores and had to be put to sleep following the discovery.

State: The flooring was not visible due to the amount of rubbish and faeces.
State: The flooring was not visible due to the amount of rubbish and faeces. Scottish SPCA

Erskine pled guilty at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court to causing unnecessary suffering under section 19 of the Animal Health & Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006.

She has been given 14 weeks jail time and a lifetime ban on owning animals.

Inspector Jade Cumming said, "This charge was dealt as Erskine failed to provide adequate nutrition to the dogs in her care, namely two German Shepherds called Rosie and Arti, and one female Jack Russell Terrier, as well as failing to provide protection from hazardous materials to the thirty canine animals in her care.

"The property the dogs were housed in was in a state of disrepair.

'Both of these dogs were emaciated, had a body score of 1/9, and on the brink of death.'
Scottish SPCA inspector Jade Cumming

"The flooring was not visible due to the amount of rubbish and faeces, and the smell of ammonia was overpowering. It was clear the property was not fit for dog or human inhabitation.

"The female Jack Russell was in a horrendous state when we arrived.

"She had wounds to both back legs and the bones in both legs were clearly visible.

"This dog, which was given a body count score of 1/9 by a vet, was extremely emaciated and in a great deal of pain and distress and we made the unfortunate decision to euthanise her.

"We also discovered two adult German shepherds, Rosie and Arti, in a small porch area where they were being housed.

"Both of these dogs were emaciated, had a body score of 1/9, and on the brink of death.

"Rosie was unable to even lift her head and both dogs had open sores and were extremely distressed, covered entirely in faeces and urine with mounds of faecal material and urine fluids in a pool below and around them.

'Rosie was unable to lift her head and both dogs had open sores and were extremely distressed, covered entirely in faeces and urine with mounds of faecal material and urine fluids in a pool below.'
Scottish SPCA inspector Jade Cumming

"Unfortunately, once again a decision was made to euthanise both dogs to prevent further suffering and distress."

Ms Cummings added: "We welcome the 14 week custodial sentence handed to Erskine as this sends out a strong message that abusing an animal is a criminal offence and the courts will take action.

"In addition, we are pleased Erskine has been banned from owning, keeping or taking possession or care of any animal for life.

"In our view, banning people guilty of mistreating and abusing animals can only help prevent more suffering.

"Bans also send an important message that owning an animal is a privilege rather than a right."

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