RSPCA welcomes conviction of Dundas man on animal cruelty charges

Sad ending: German Shepherd Zac's untreated condition was so severe and painful that RSPCA vets deemed it cruel for him to be kept alive.

Sad ending: German Shepherd Zac's untreated condition was so severe and painful that RSPCA vets deemed it cruel for him to be kept alive.

A Dundas man was fined $6000 and banned from owning any animals for five years after he was found guilty of animal cruelty for a second time.

Paul Ross Taylor, 65, who owns a dog security company, faced Fairfield Local Court in relation to his German Shepherd Zac, who was found as a stray with matted fur and severe untreated osteoarthritis of the hips.

Zac had been hired out as a working guard dog up by his owner until the day he came into RSPCA care and had such advanced arthritis he could barely walk. The 10-year-old dog was later euthanised.

Zac's condition was so severe that he had to be put down.

Mr Taylor was convicted of three counts of failing to provide veterinary treatment for osteoarthritis, overgrown nails and fly bitten ears, as well as an act of cruelty for the dog’s matted coat. He was fined $1500 for each offence totalling $6000, ordered to pay costs of $3,731.21 and to attend a police station to have his fingerprints recorded.

Mr Taylor was also convicted of animal cruelty in 2011, where he was fined $500, ordered to pay costs of $4,524.20 and given a 12 month good behaviour bond.     

Zac was one of two dogs without ID collars were found in the RSPCA overnight kennels last December after being found by a member of the public.

Inspectors and a veterinarian were alerted to Zac’s condition as he appeared aged, with matted fur and an affected gait, which veterinarians diagnosed as severe untreated osteoarthritis.

Both dogs were deemed to be strays and required to be impounded under the Companion Animals Act. But because Zac was in need of veterinary treatment, he was kept at the RSPCA.

Both dogs were microchipped to Mr Taylor, and in conversation with council, it became apparent that Zac had previously escaped and been found as a stray on seven separate occasions. 

The vets found there had been a failure to seek and provide necessary veterinary treatment for Zac’s severe osteoarthritis of the hips for a period of no less than six months prior to presentation and most likely longer and that he should have been retired from security work.

The RSPCA contacted Mr Taylor, who claimed Zac had seen his vet and received a cortisone injection. His vet confirmed Mr Taylor had over 14 dogs registered there but the subject dog was not on file and had not received any treatment. Mr Taylor later rescinded this claim, admitting that that Zac had never received any vet treatment or any preventative treatment such as heartworm prevention and worming.

After some negotiations, Mr Taylor eventually surrendered the dog into RSPCA custody.

Zac underwent veterinary treatment and rehabilitation. But sadly, vets deemed his untreated condition was so severe and painful that it was cruel for him to be kept alive.

“It’s heartbreaking for vets and all those involved in these cases that a business which profits from the labour of dogs, can blatantly disregard basic preventable and treatable veterinary conditions which when left neglected result in the necessary euthanasia of this dog on humane grounds,”  RSPCA NSW chief inspector David O’Shannessy said

“Way too often our vets and inspectors are left to manage and deal with the animal welfare consequences of irresponsible owners who should know better,” comments

“In this case we’re glad to see the magistrate impose a prohibition order that will prevent this man from engaging with and abusing animals for profit.”

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