4 August 2022

A 39-year-old woman and 25-year-old man have been charged for allegedly failing to properly feed their Sharpei crossbreed dog.

RSPCA WA received a cruelty report in relation to the black and white male dog in February.   

The female accused told an inspector the dog had been a stray that she decided to keep as her dog had died.

However, she claimed he was fighting with another dog at the premises, so she was separating them by keeping the Sharpei crossbreed in the garage.

The inspector asked to see the dog and helped the female accused lift the garage door.

The inspector reported that the dog was severely emaciated with the outline of his ribs, hips and spine all clearly visible. Additionally, he had a flat demeanour and was having difficulty opening his eyes when the roller door lifted as the garage was in complete darkness. When he did stand to walk, he was tripping over, and the inspector noted he was weak and lethargic.

The inspector suspected an offence under the Animal Welfare Act 2002 and seized the dog.

The male accused—who also lived at the Rivervale address—told the inspector the dog was fed dog biscuits, rice, goat, chicken and bones three times a day, seven days a week. He also said he would feed the dog every time he scratched at the garage door which was sometimes up to five times a night.

A vet examination found the dog was extremely emaciated with severe muscle atrophy. He was covered in fleas and scabs.

The dog weighed just 15.5kgs. After six weeks in the care of the RSPCA, that had increased to a healthy 20.6kgs.

The animal cruelty charges will be heard in the Perth Magistrates Court on 19 August.

The maximum penalty for a charge of animal cruelty is a $50,000 fine and five years in prison.

Report cruelty 24/7 on 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 358) or online here.