Man fined for cutting off dogs' tails

23-year-old man fined €800 after being found guilty of causing dogs undue pain

A man has been fined €800 after admitting to cutting the tails off two puppies he had found in his field and decided to adopt

Gian Carlo Bonnici, of Zejtun, was also found guilty of illegally carrying out surgical operations on the animals, of keeping the dogs without a licence, and of causing the dogs undue pain.

Magistrate Ian Farrugia heard that in February 2013, animal welfare volunteers came across the accued’s dog and its six puppies in a field in Tas-Silg, Marsaxlokk.

Two of the puppies had their tails cut off, another had inflammation around its tail and none of the dogs had a microchip.

The dogs were subsequently taken to a nearby animal sanctuary pending further investigations. After realising that his dogs had been taken away, the accused – who had adopted the dogs after he found their mother wandering about his field – sought to get them back.

When he called at the Zejtun police station, he was informed that he was being investigated over charges of animal cruelty.

However, charges of animal cruelty were thrown out after Ivan Galea, a veterinarian, underlined that even though the dogs were slightly malnourished, they were not abandoned or in bad shape.

Nevertheless, Magistrate Ian Farrugia said the accused had admitted to cutting off the dogs’ tails, and fined him €800.

Inspector Carol Fabri prosecuted.

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