Men jailed for cropping puppies’ ears in prohibited procedure
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Three men have been jailed after they cropped three puppy’s ears in a banned procedure.
Ryan Woodward, 24, from Stoke-on-Trent, Alexander David Johnson, 32, from Stoke-on-Trent and Michael Nolan, 31, from Carlisle, were sentenced at Cannock Magistrates' Court yesterday (Wednesday 3 August).
The three men had pleaded guilty on 11 July.
Johnson was sentenced to 24 weeks’ imprisonment and ordered to pay £775 costs for cropping of ears on three puppies.
Woodward was jailed for 19 weeks and ordered to pay £775 costs after pleading guilty to aid, abet, counsel or procure Alexander David Johnson to carry out a prohibited procedure of cropping the ears of three puppies.
Nolan was jailed for 14 weeks and ordered to pay £400 costs for being responsible for a puppy and allowing another person to carry out a prohibited procedure - cropping of ears on the animal - and permitting it to happen to failing to take steps to stop it.
All three were disqualified from keeping dogs - Johnson for life and Woodward and Nolan for 15 years - and all were served with deprivation orders meaning they have 21 days to rehome any dogs still in their care.
At 7.30pm on 10 November 2020, Staffordshire Police received a report of a group of men who were transporting a crate of puppies into a flat on Forest Court, Hanley.
Sgt Christopher Gifford, PC Graham Spiller and PC Andrew Johnson attended the address and Woodward, Johnson and Nolan were inside.
PC Rebecca Tyler, the officer in the case, of Stoke North Local Policing Team, said: “This is something that my colleagues and I will remember for the rest of our careers.
“Two puppies were found bleeding with stitches in their ears and were hardly breathing. Another puppy was found with the same injuries hidden behind a sofa. A further three puppies were in the property but had not had the procedure.”
Officers found an operating table and bag containing cash and medical equipment in the flat.
Woodward, Johnson and Nolan were then arrested and the RSPCA took over ownership of the investigation.
PC Tyler added: “We are glad that the puppies have recovered and have found loving homes.”
RSPCA inspector Jenny Bethel said: “In an independent expert veterinary report, which was presented to the court, it was stated that the cropping of the ears of the puppies would have caused them to suffer unnecessarily even though they were anaesthetised during the actual procedure and they suffered considerable amounts of unnecessary pain and distress after the procedure.