Thousands of Hampshire pet owners investigated by animal welfare officers

Thousands of pet owners investigated by animal welfare officers

Thousands of pet owners investigated by animal welfare officers

First published in News
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter

ANIMAL welfare activists in have investigated more than 4,500 cruelty cases against pet owners in Hampshire.

And officers warn callous lawbreakers who persistently mistreat their creatures will be hunted down.

Figures released yesterday by the RSPCA reveal soaring numbers of mistreatment cases in the county.

The statistics disclosed to launch the charity's major anti-cruelty campaign reveals the group investigated more 4,586 complaints of cruelty in Hampshire in 2013 - 211 more than the previous year.

Their probes led to 93 convictions of owners - up from 87 in 2012.

It comes as the charity launches RSCPA Week - a seven day awareness initiative climaxing on June 22.

Those brought to justice include Southampton man Matthew Coffin from Vanguard Road, Townhill Park, who was banned for keeping animals for 10 years after causing suffering to his pet cat while showing off to his mates.

Shocking footage previously shown in the Echo captures the 27-year-old from swinging his 12-month-old cat Daisy by her tail, tossing her up into the air and violently bouncing her up and down like a yo-yo.

Meanwhile Marshall Lee, 65, from Carnation Road, Swaythling, was banned from keeping birds after being found guilty of a string of animal welfare failures.

RSPCA officers swooping on his house found he was keeping a variety of wild species in cramped conditions.

They included fout red-breasted geese hemmed in a paved patio with insufficient soft material to rest on and a bowl of dirty water to small to paddle in.

Nationally the number of complaints increased to 153,833 compared to 153,770 the previous year.

This resulted in 3,961 convictions - down from 4,168 the previous year.

Dogs were most likely to be mistreated with 2,505 convictions, down from 2,568 the previous year.

RSCPA external affairs head David Bowles said: “Whilst we are heartened that the numbers of convictions have decreased in most areas, the fact that we are investigating more and more complaints shows that there is still a culture of cruelty out there.

“We should be proud that, despite taking in some very damaged animals, we rehomed an incredible 55,323 animals in 2013.”

“Although there have been fewer convictions relating to dogs, we are still rescuing more and more.

“We don't pick and choose by breed or by the desperate lives that they've lived before they came to us.”

See rspcaweek.org.uk to download a fundraising pack, volunteer for local collections or join an animal welfare campaign or find out about rehoming an animal.

Comments (4)

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9:59am Wed 18 Jun 14

Dai Rear says...

1 investigation in 50 leads to a prosecution. That seems very low. And it's "officers" I think, not "activists" "Activists" tend to be single issue fanatics and certainly not people you'd rely on for a dispassionate investigation.
1 investigation in 50 leads to a prosecution. That seems very low. And it's "officers" I think, not "activists" "Activists" tend to be single issue fanatics and certainly not people you'd rely on for a dispassionate investigation. Dai Rear
  • Score: 2

3:42pm Wed 18 Jun 14

wilson castaway says...

Im sure many calls are malicious or someone has reported a pet but its turned out to be ill and recieving vetinary care.My neighbour had an rspca officer turn up at their door as somebody had reported that there pet was mistreated and it was totally false.
Im sure many calls are malicious or someone has reported a pet but its turned out to be ill and recieving vetinary care.My neighbour had an rspca officer turn up at their door as somebody had reported that there pet was mistreated and it was totally false. wilson castaway
  • Score: 2

4:19pm Wed 18 Jun 14

Quite Frankly says...

Stranger to spellcheck?
Stranger to spellcheck? Quite Frankly
  • Score: -2

8:00pm Wed 18 Jun 14

geoff51 says...

The RSPCA has been hijacked by the nutters and extremists, they spent over £200k on a spurious prosecution of a Foxhunt on the reports from the LACS.
How many pet could they have saved for that money?
Never give money to them, give it to Dogs Trust or Cats Protection, at least they dont destroy healthy animals like the RSPCA do
The RSPCA has been hijacked by the nutters and extremists, they spent over £200k on a spurious prosecution of a Foxhunt on the reports from the LACS. How many pet could they have saved for that money? Never give money to them, give it to Dogs Trust or Cats Protection, at least they dont destroy healthy animals like the RSPCA do geoff51
  • Score: 2

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