Woman who took in dog after son's death banned from keeping animals

Woman Who Took In Dog After Son's Death Banned From Keeping Animals Woman Who Took In Dog After Son's Death Banned From Keeping Animals
The court heard 2.2kg of matted hair was removed from the dog after he was surrendered by his owner. Photo: Joe Boland
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Stephen Maguire

A woman who took in her late son's dog after he was killed in a road crash has been banned from keeping animals for five years.

Pensioner Chrissie McGinley appeared at Letterkenny District Court charged with mistreating the dog at her home at Glenwood Park in Letterkenny, Co Donegal.

The court was told the dog, a male husky, was kept in a pen in "filthy conditions".

Senior inspector with the ISPCA, Kevin McGinley, said he was requested to attend a property at Glenwood Park on September 13th, 2019 by Garda Sandra Kilcoyne.

Gardaí had initially visited the property in relation to another matter, but became concerned for the dog. Mr McGinley told the court of how the dog's coat was "extremely matted and filthy".

The dog, Beckham, was underweight and living in a pen covered in dog faeces and muck, the inspector said. McGinley (68) identified herself as the owner of the dog and said she took ownership of the animal following the death of her son.



McGinley, who was not in court for the hearing, voluntarily gave up the dog and the animal was then brought to a vet.

The ISPCA senior inspector explained the vet said the dog was "under condition" with regard to nutrition, rating the pet two out of five.

“A dog like this would require regular grooming,” the inspector said, adding that 2.2kg of matted hair was removed from the dog in order to give him a better quality of life.

The dog has since been re-homed and was said to be doing well.

Solicitor for the defendant, Rory O’Brien, said his client "took on a responsibility she wasn’t capable of doing".

“She is 68 years old and is asking me to convey her apology, for what it is worth, to the ISPCA,” Mr O’Brien said. “She is hopeful that the dog is in a better place."

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“She subsumed responsibility for the dog when her son died in a car accident. There were sentimental circumstances,” he added.

Mr O’Brien said his client, who has no similar previous convictions, was co-operative and had entered a plea.

Judge Deirdre Gearty convicted McGinley, fining her €200.

She was also disqualified from keeping animals for a period of five years.

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