A woman from Stockton-on-Tees has been jailed for eight weeks and disqualified from keeping animals for life after allowing an English bull terrier called ‘Skitz’ to suffer.

Claire Louise Parkinson (D.O.B 24.6.82) of Doncaster Crescent appeared before Teesside Magistrates’ Court on Friday (9 December), in a prosecution case brought by the RSPCA.

RSPCA inspector Clare Wilson said: “Skitz was in such a terrible condition that the vet considered the only humane thing to do was to put him to sleep to end his suffering.

“There was discharge coming from his eyes and he was was blind as a result of a lack of necessary veterinary treatment.

“His skin was covered in sores – they were literally all over his body – many of which were bleeding.

“He was in a very distressed state.”

Parkinson pleaded guilty to two offences under the Animal Welfare Act – between 24 August 2015 and 24 August 2016, causing unnecessary suffering to Skitz (1.) by failing to provide veterinary care and attention for his skin condition and (2.) by failing to provide veterinary care and attention for a problem with his eyes.

The RSPCA had issued a warning notice in June 2014 as Skitz had a skin and eye condition and hadn’t seen a vet, and Parkinson did take him to the vets once in response to that.

RSPCA inspector Wilson said: “The vets asked to see Skitz again in 7-10 days and advised that he would need ongoing medication.

“We visited the address several times to check that Skitz was still receiving treatment but there was never an answer at the door and cards to call us were ignored. A neighbour told us they thought the dog was no longer there as they hadn’t seen him in the garden.”

She added: “This was a case of extreme neglect for which there can be no excuse.

“All owners are responsible for meeting the needs of the animals in their care, whatever those needs may be.

“It took a very long time for Skitz to get into this state and he suffered a great deal.”

A warrant is out for the arrest of Parkinson’s ex-partner and co-accused, Mark Neville Henry.

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