Fishponds dog breeder jailed for cropping puppies' ears
AN UNLICENSED dog breeder from Fishponds has been jailed for animal cruelty after paying for nine puppies to have their ears cropped.
RSPCA inspectors found the litter of 15-week-old "bull breed" puppies at Adam Malik's home in Alcove Road in January, after a call raising concerns about their welfare.
Inspector Kimily Walters said the puppies were being kept in a makeshift kennel in an outhouse and their ears were "red, crusty and had not yet healed".
Police seized the nine cropped puppies (below), along with another 12 four-week-old puppies and their mother, which were being kept in a shower cubicle, and an eight-month old puppy Malik had also bred.
Malik told the investigators that he had arranged for someone he didn't know to come to his home, take the puppies away and crop their ears, paying £3,000 for the illegal procedure to be carried out around three weeks earlier.
Bristol Magistrates Court heard that he intended to sell the puppies, which had received no pain relief.
The RSPCA says ear cropping has become "glamourised" due to celebrities owning and posting pictures of cropped dogs on social media.
RSPCA dog welfare expert Dr Samantha Gaines said: "Dogs have their ears cropped for one reason only; to achieve a certain 'look'. In short, it makes them look tougher, more intimidating.
"Ear cropping is painful and completely unnecessary. Despite what some breeders will claim, cropping a dog's ears does not benefit them in any way. It can be detrimental to their health, behaviour and welfare in the short-term and in the long-term."
Kimily said: “Many of these pups have had ongoing problems caused by their cropped ears, including recurrent infections. One needed an operation because two of the staples, used to seal the wound after the procedure, had become embedded inside his right ear."
The nine puppies are now all in "wonderful" foster homes, she added.
A dog found at the house with cropped ears
Malik, aged 30, pleaded guilty to an offence under the Animal Welfare Act.
On May 6 magistrates sentenced him to 14 weeks in jail and disqualified him from keeping dogs for 15 years, telling him the offence was so serious prison was the only option.
They told him: “The puppies continued to suffer pain and wound infection and you must have known they were suffering and they continued to suffer.
"They saw no vet and it was all for commercial gain."
Top picture: One of the puppies, which had just had its ears cropped, found at the house by RSPCA inspectors