Pet owner banned over ‘squalid’ animal conditions
A MAGISTRATE described the living conditions as squalid where an Ipswich man subjected his pets to after he viewed disturbing photos in an RSPCA prosecution case.
RSPCA officers found decomposing kittens, maggots, a kitten skull, and malnourished dogs suffering with skin ailments at the home of Ipswich father-of-four Anthony Pettiford and his former partner.
Going before Ipswich Magistrates Court Anthony James Pettiford, 49, from Raceview, pleaded guilty to eight charges under the Animal Care and Protection Act.
The charges against the truck driver related to offences of failing to feed, failing to treat, and failing to provide adequate living conditions to his animals between November 4, 2018 and December 4, 2018.
RSPCA prosecutor Nathan Boyd said the photos showed the living conditions of the animals as "simply appalling".
He said three kittens were found dead, with the body of one full of maggots. Another died on the way to care, and one kelpie dog named Rugrat had significant hair loss.
The offences related to animals including a male Rottweiler named Samson, a female tabby short haired cat, a short haired cat, a brown tabby, and a black haired cat.
Other animals included goldfish, a lorikeet, red and white galah, budgerigar, three cockatiels, a Krefft's turtle, and a yellow Bearded Dragon.
Inspectors found Lorikeets housed in dirty cages, malnourished kittens with fleas laying on an old mattress full of maggots, dog cages filled with faeces and no access to water.
No food for the animals was found at the property.
Pettiford held a reptile licence and a lizard found inside had no access to water.
RSPCA vets observed Samson with muscle wastage in the hind legs, lumbar kyphosis, signs of arthritis with poor nail and coat condition - dirty scurfy skin, a severe flea burden, and dental disease that required extractions.
Rugrat (pictured above) was suffering muscle wastage and lumbar kyphosis, terrible coat and nail condition, severe skin issues including scale and crusts, severe flea burden, a painful yeast infection in his ears, and moderate dental disease.
The court heard Pettiford's partner suffered health issues and left the property a week or so prior to the RSPCA inspection.
"He knew there were two deceased kittens but he was unsure what happened to the bodies. He believes his ex-partner may have done something with the bodies while he was at work," Mr Boyd said.
"Having seen the photos it beggars belief one would think it was an acceptable way to care for animals."
The prosecution sought costs totalling more than $2669.
Magistrate Damian Carroll said Pettiford made full and frank admissions and co-operated.
Mr Carroll took into account the relationship breakdown at the time with the house falling into some disrepair. Pettiford shared responsibilities with his former partner who was suffering mental health issues.
Pettiford was sentenced to an 18-month probation order and ordered to pay the costs.
He was placed on a threeyear prohibition order in which he is not to have animals. No conviction recorded.