North Shields man banned from keeping dogs after dog found underweight and in an “unsuitable environment”

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An RSPCA inspector attended the property in North Shields alongside the police.

A man from North Shields has been banned from keeping dogs, after leaving his dog unattended in an unsuitable environment.

Callum Paramos, aged 21 of Seymour Street in North Shields appeared at North Tyneside Magistrates’ Court on Thursday March 2, where he pleaded guilty to an offence under the Animal Welfare Act.

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Paramos’ dog, Zeus (a black-brindle short hair Lurcher) was found in August 2022 in the Seymour Street property. Zeus was underweight, with his bones seen protruding from his body, having been left unattended for long periods of time.

RSPCA inspector Helen Bestwick who attended the scene with police, provided a witness statement to the court, where she said: “I immediately noticed a strong smell of urine.”

“The dog was in a thin bodily condition and I could easily see its ribs, hips and spine. His nails were also long. The dog was bright, alert and friendly.”

Paramos had told the inspector that Zeus was fed daily and “had always been thin”.

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Inspector Bewick further explained that once she had seen the flat, it seemed to contain no personal belongings, suggesting that no one lived there.

She said: “The sofa had been chewed and shredded by the dog. In the kitchen there was a large bag of Wagg dog biscuits which looked like it was nearly full.

“There was a bowl of biscuits down and a paint tray being used for water. They looked like they had just been put there. I suspected the dog was regularly being left alone in the flat for long periods of time.”

A veterinary surgeon who examined Zeus provided a written statement to court, explaining that the dog was 15% underweight, with his ribs, vertebrae and pelvic bones easily visible.

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The veterinarian said: “The ability and willingness of the dog to eat and the lack of abnormal health conditions detected on examination led me to form the opinion that a suitable diet sufficient in protein, calories and quantity had not always been available.”

The veterinarian also examined photographs of the dog’s living conditions, and explained that the kitchen and utility area of the flat - where the dog was kept - was “littered with faecal material and looked to be wet”, concluding that the provision of a comfortable, clean and dry rest area was not met.

In court, Paramos accepted that he had not done a very good job of caring for the dog after claiming to have taken the dog after a previous owner couldn’t look after it.

Paramos was sentenced to a 20 month community order, having to undertake 40 hours of unpaid work and was banned from keeping dogs for two years. He was also ordered to pay £100 in costs and a victim surcharge of £114.

Zeus was taken into the care of RSPCA Felledge Animal Centre, before being transferred to RSPCA Bryn Y Maen Animal Centre. He is currently looking to be rehomed.

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