18 November 2022

A 61-year-old Yokine man has been charged with animal cruelty after allegedly hitting his Chihuahua puppy in the head with a paving mallet, fracturing his skull.

On 22 June, the alleged offender took the 5-month-old puppy to a vet who noted the dog had sustained several skull fractures including fractures to his eye socket, his cheek bone, and at the base of his ear canal which had ruptured his ear drum. The puppy had also suffered bleeding into the lungs.The accused denied any knowledge of how the injuries occurred.

The puppy was given pain killers and other medication. The following morning, the accused, against veterinary advice, collected the puppy from the vet clinic and took him home. At 4pm the same day, a friend of the accused insisted on taking the puppy to a vet however the dog died en route.

The puppy’s body was surrendered to RSPCA WA. Investigating inspectors later executed a warrant at the accused’s premises and seized a blood-stained paving mallet.

During questioning, the accused continued to deny any knowledge of how the puppy became injured. A WA Police forensic investigation officer confirmed that the accused’s black paving mallet was positive for traces of non-human blood.

The alleged offender has been charged under sections 19(1) and 19(2)(a) of the Animal Welfare Act 2002. It is alleged that he was cruel to an animal in that he maliciously beat the puppy.

The charge will be heard in the Perth Magistrates Court on 6 January 2023.

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

The RSPCA relies on the community to report incidents of suspected cruelty and neglect. Report cruelty 24/7 on 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 358) or online.