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Sunday, March 25, 2018

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GRAPHIC: List of shame revealed

Posted at 9:53am Monday 26 Feb, 2018

The SPCA List of Shame has been released today, highlighting 11 of the most shameful cases of animal cruelty in 2017.

The list includes a five year old Lab starved to death, a duck with its beak blown up by a firecracker and a neglected horse left in pain with a deformed eye and engorged head injury. 

The List of Shame is being released ahead of the 2018 SPCA Annual Appeal from 9th to 11th March, which aims to raise awareness and funding to support the 15,000+ animal welfare complaints SPCA receive each year, along with ongoing education to prevent animal cruelty. 

“We need the public’s support to end this shameful cruelty in New Zealand. We receive almost no government funding to run the SPCA Inspectorate, which costs approximately $9 million every year," says SPCA Chief Executive Andrea Midgen.

The face of this year’s campaign is Sully, a spaniel-poodle cross owned by a woman previously prosecuted by the SPCA and disqualified from owning animals. While in her care, Sully experienced extreme psychological trauma that led to severe anxiety and the inability to make eye contact.

“I found him locked in a garage where he was living with his owner and another dog. There is evidence to support the dogs were never let outside, and never interacted with anyone other than his owner, resulting in serious emotional trauma and severe separation anxiety," says Melissa, the inspector who rescued Sully.

After months of successful rehabilitation, Sully now lives happily with his new family at a home on Auckland’s North Shore with a big back yard.

This year’s List of Shame contains some shocking cases of neglect and cruelty, including 600 starving chickens, roosters, and ducks with severe feather loss found in an overcrowded environment trying to feed on the decomposing birds around them, and a dog hit by a car with de-gloving injuries to the bone on both hind legs left by its owner to suffer with no veterinary aid. 

“We know this list is very upsetting, but this is the reality of what our Inspectors see in their jobs. These horrific cases of neglect and violence towards animals reinforces the vital need for the SPCA’s work,” says Andrea.

“The SPCA is here to stand up for any animal that is physically abused, abandoned, neglected, tortured and in pain. It is a very big job and we need all the support we can get.”

Donations for this year’s SPCA Annual Appeal can be made to street collectors around the country from Friday 9th to Sunday 11th March, or online

1) Sully, a spaniel poodle cross, was owned by a woman previously prosecuted by the SPCA and disqualified from owning animals. He was found living in a dark room, underweight and covered in matts in his coat that prevented him from moving
freely. After a court order to forfeit Sully into the care of the SPCA and months of rehabilitation, Sully was adopted by a new loving family. The owner is being prosecuted and due to her failing to appear at court, a warrant for her arrest has been issued.
Sully was chosen as the ‘face’ of the 2018 SPCA Annual Appeal because he demonstrates just how vital the SPCA’s work is. Without dedication from the SPCA Inspectors, vets, canine team, animal behaviourists and his foster family, Sully would not be living the happy life he is today.

2) A man was sentenced to home detention after keeping a large number of birds in abhorrent condition. Upon arriving at his property, an SPCA Inspector found 600 chickens, roosters and ducks being kept in overcrowded conditions. The birds were walking around in thick mud and faeces, among the bodies of dead birds. They were so hungry that they were trying to feed on the decomposing birds. A large number of birds were removed by the inspector. A veterinarian examination determined that the health and prognosis of the birds was so poor they were unlikely to regain full health, even with intensive treatment. Sadly, they had to be euthanised to end their suffering. The man was prosecuted by the SPCA and sentenced to six months’ home detention, 150 hours of community work, and ordered to pay veterinary and court costs to a total value of $3840. He was also disqualified from owning animals for 10 years.

3) It wasn’t until Tasha collapsed and was unresponsive that anyone sought help for her. The five-year-old Labrador cross was rescued by an SPCA Inspector and taken for immediate veterinary treatment. Sadly, she died the same day due to the severity of
her condition. Tasha was so emaciated that she had the lowest possible body
condition and clinical signs indicating chronic starvation. She had flea allergic skin disease, a sore on her leg and fur loss consistent with a collar wound. Tasha would have endured a huge amount of pain and was probably suffering for a considerable period of time. Her owner pleaded guilty to ill-treatment of an animal, was disqualified
from owning animals for 10 years and fined $2000.

4) In a very disturbing case of animal cruelty, a young mallard duck was found with catastrophic fireworks-related injuries that SPCA veterinarians suspect were intentionally inflicted. The duck was found still alive, and in extreme pain. Her beak was destroyed and she had suffered a degloving injury. The injuries she sustained could only have been caused by a firework, likely purposely put in the duck’s mouth.
These catastrophic injuries were irreparable and the kindest thing SPCA veterinarians could do was end her suffering. Despite launching a full investigation, SPCA Inspectors never found the person or persons responsible.

5) An SPCA Inspector found Kasey and Keita living alone inside a house among rubbish, faeces and very little food and water. Keita was pregnant and underweight and Kasey was suffering from a bad ear infection. Their owner told the SPCA the dogs had been living alone in the house for a year and he had been only visiting once a week.
After an SPCA investigation, the owner was banned from owning dogs for five years, sentenced to 120 hours’ community work and ordered to pay $3183.80 in reparations to the SPCA. Both Kasey and Keita were forfeited to the care of the SPCA, where they made a full recovery.

6) Jimmy was dumped at a beach, malnourished and with bad wounds, bruising to his head and an irreparable eye injury. His injuries suggest Jimmy suffered blunt force trauma to his head – likely inflicted purposely by a cruel person. SPCA Inspectors launched a full animal welfare investigation, but have not found the person or persons responsible. Jimmy amazed SPCA staff with his kind soul and loving temperament – and even wagged his tail while veterinarians stitched up his eye. He is still recovering at a foster home, but once healed, Jimmy will be adopted by a loving family and finally get the love and care he deserves.

7) Several animals had to be euthanised to alleviate their suffering, after their owner failed to treat their obvious injuries and ailments. The owner’s animals included a goat with an irreparable fracture, and a cat suffering from kidney disease, painful dental disease and two untreated fractures. The woman was sentenced to 300 hours’ community work and 9 months supervision, including attendance of any programmes recommended by probation.


She was ordered to pay $2000 reparations, $500 towards legal costs, to forfeit ownership of her two cats to the SPCA and was disqualified from owning animals for five years. A cow with a severe, untreated eye injury was also found on the woman’s property but was identified as belonging to her associate.

He was also prosecuted and sentenced to 150 hours’ community work, ordered to pay $788.20 in reparations and a contribution of $500 towards solicitor costs and disqualified from owning animals for five years.

8) SPCA Inspectors arrived at a paddock to find a grey horse, Frosty, in obvious pain and distress. Frosty had undergone eye removal surgery and the sutures had been left in and his head was grossly enlarged and misshapen. The Inspectors immediately called a veterinarian, who said that Frosty’s facial swelling, eating and breathing difficulty were obvious even from a distance and should have been tended to immediately. Sadly, due to the extent of his injuries, the veterinarian recommended Frosty be euthanised on humane grounds. Frosty’s owner was prosecuted by the SPCA and sentenced to 260 hours’ community work, disqualified from owning horses for 5 years and ordered to pay reparations of $1468.41.

9) When Lemuska the staffy was hit by a car, he sustained such terrible injuries he couldn’t move. He suffered open, degloving wounds on both hind legs so severe that the bone was exposed. Despite these obvious injuries, Lemuska’s owner didn’t take him for veterinary treatment. 

An SPCA Inspector immediately seized Lemuska to take him for urgent veterinary treatment. Sadly due to the extent of his injuries and the severe and distress he was suffering, there was no choice to end Lemuska’s suffering. Lemuska’s owner was prosecuted by the SPCA and sentenced to 150 hours’ of community work, and ordered to pay reparations of $197.31 and court costs of $60. He was also disqualified from owning animals for two years.

10) Four dumped kittens were rescued and brought back to health by the SPCA after they were found in a bin liner. Just six weeks old, the tabby kittens were very lucky to have survived the ordeal. They were given vet care, food, and spent time with a foster family before each being adopted by loving families. Abandoning an animal is an offence under the Animal Welfare Act 1999, but the SPCA Inspector’s investigation into finding the person responsible was not successful. Unfortunately, animals being dumped and abandoned is not uncommon - stories like this can be found at
every SPCA Centre across New Zealand.

11) Sandfly’s routine dental check-up was botched so badly by the equine dentist, it caused irreversible damage to his pulp tissue. The equine dentist removed half to two thirds of two cheek teeth without pre, or post-treatment sedation or pain relief. Two months later, Sandfly stopped eating and was diagnosed with an infection in
one of his teeth.

The SPCA prosecuted the equine dentist responsible for Sandfly’s
treatment and he was ordered to pay a fine of $2,500 payable to the SPCA and reparation of $2,500 vet costs payable to the pony’s owner. Because of the irreversible tissue damage, Sandfly is being kept on long-term oral antibiotics and a tooth extraction will be required.


Summary of Heartbreak.

Posted on 27-02-2018 12:06 | By morepork

1. Most people are disgusted and reviled by this. 2. Penalties need to include prison, and enforcement of things like prohibition of owning an animal needs to be much stronger. 3. The perpetrators should be publicly named. 5. We should all be thankful for the SPCA and support them to the fullest extent we can.
@Told You

Posted on 27-02-2018 11:56 | By morepork

i share your revulsion. This kind of crime diminishes all of us (if we claim to be the same species as these people) but I don’t believe this is "Human Nature". There is propensity for good and bad in all of us and the same species (Homo Sapiens) that do these awful things also create an SPCA. These sad apologies for a "Human" are disturbed people who are simply unable to empathize with other living creatures. As a community, we need to make it clear that we won’t take this kind of treatment of animals lightly, and the penalties need to include prison, in my opinion. (It takes a lot for me to say this; I don’t generally see prison as an answer, unless it rehabilitates...)

Posted on 27-02-2018 11:43 | By morepork

... will have no effect on the people who did these truly terrible things, because they have no shame. To feel shame requires pride and respect and these are very disturbed people who have little of either. Nevertheless, they SHOULD be named. Just so the rest of us can avoid them. Fines (that are unlikely ever to be paid, community service (that they are unlikely to turn up for) and prohibited from owning an animal (which they can easily flaunt,as it is not enforced) are not suitable corrections for crimes like this. A prison term is warranted so they can feel the deprivation of freedom they imposed on these poor animals. Like others, I found it very hard to read this and see the pictures... it made me wish we still had public pillories so the community could express its repulsion for people who do this.
Lowlife scum

Posted on 27-02-2018 11:34 | By comfortablynumb

A long prison sentence for these abusers and they must never be allowed to own an animal again. Had to stop reading this article as I felt sick to the stomach. These poor animals deserve better and so glad Sully is now happy boy. The SPCA are amazing.

Posted on 26-02-2018 21:13 | By Bruja

We owe it to these poor animals to know exactly WHO these sickening ’things’ (not people, just ’things’) are.

Posted on 26-02-2018 17:36 | By davidt5

The owners of these animals should be named and shamed.Very disturbing and disgracefull.
I have scrolled......

Posted on 26-02-2018 17:09 | By Bruja

through this while looking away because I simply cannot ’see’ what I am sure is there. WHY can there not be the SAME sentences giving for neglect, abuse, cruelty to an animal as there are for those crimes comitted on a human? We need to raise the respect for non-human animals to that of human animals. Frankly, WE are the inferior species in truth.
Sickening behaviour, NZ needs to do better!

Posted on 26-02-2018 16:42 | By BennyBenson

NZ needs to have more effective laws and tougher minimal sentences for animal abuse including lifetime bans on ownership. Time and time again those who abuse are basically getting off way too lightly.
Evil people

Posted on 26-02-2018 15:17 | By Happyday

Why can the names of these truly evil people not be published so they can be publicly shamed? Maybe the punishment should fit the crime; give them a taste of their own medicine.

Posted on 26-02-2018 14:35 | By Life

These sub-humans who do this sort of thing usually have other issues that can relate to abusive nature against other people. They don’t value life of a defenseless animal or people! Increase the fines!

Posted on 26-02-2018 13:16 | By overit

Words just fail me. Its very upsetting. Thank goodness for the SPCA and others.

Posted on 26-02-2018 12:29 | By raz

Where’s the justice. Animals need our ptotection.We made the choice to keep or adopt them. And these are what they get? Some humans are worse than animals.And what about the penalties meted by the courts. What a joke.Home detention? Community service? Banned from owning for five years? PATHETIC. They should be treated the same as what they would do to a child. Grow up all you sentencing judges.

Posted on 26-02-2018 10:31 | By Told you

I can not believe how some people can let animals suffer this way,how would they like to be treated the same way.Human nature rares it ugly head and these people should be euthanised like their suffering animals.

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