One of the worst cases of animal cruelty that investigators have ever encountered included a sick couple who starved their Lurcher puppy to death.
Three-year-old Tiggy was allegedly found abandoned on the side of the road by Kerry Patterson, 35, and Reece Milburn, 30, who then reported him to their local council.
In Blyth, Northumberland, an animal protection officer visited them and said the animal was in “the worst incident he’d seen in his 15 years on the job.”
Tiggy was shown as having almost little fur on her body and showing ribs that protruded from her lean torso.
Additionally, she was very dehydrated, had rashes and a mite infestation, and was so weak that she was unable to stand.
Days before Christmas in 2019, Tiggy was found, and when her sorrowful photos went viral, Northumberland County Council launched an appeal to find her owners.
Several days later, the council was inundated with emails claiming Tiggy belonged to Patterson and Milburn.
The pair admitted to causing unneeded pain to a protected species when they appeared in court on Thursday, March 3.
Additionally, they acknowledged to forgetting to take care of their Staffordshire Bull Terrier, their second dog.
A terrier named Enzo has a skin condition and a mite infestation.
They were each ordered to pay a victim cost of £120 and received a 12-week jail term as well as a lifetime ban on owning or caring for animals.
It was “one of the most heinous and high-profile acts of animal cruelty the county has ever seen,” said Philip Soderquest, a representative for the council.
He said, “Our animal welfare team works tirelessly to look into cases of animal neglect and abuse and bring offenders to justice.”
The lawyer claims, “We were adamant that Tiggy’s former owners would get their day in court, and even though it took two years, we finally got the outcome we needed today.”
Tiggy’s story ended happily thanks to the hard work of the team at Berwick Animal Rescue Centre.
‘She is a picture of health and happiness, with a new home, a new life with dog pals, and even a new name.’
The couple’s other dog, Enzo, is still in kennels and waiting for a permanent home.