A man from County Durham has been disqualified from keeping animals for 10 years after moving out of his house and leaving his cat, called Cass, behind.


Thomas John Black (D.O.B 13.01.1995) of Laurel Road, Stockton-on-Tees was sentenced at Teesside Magistrates Court last month (Friday 25 January).Cass in house


He pleaded guilty to three offences under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 in a prosecution case brought by the RSPCA.


He admitted failing to meet the needs of Cass by (1) failing to meet his need for a suitable environment, (2.) failing to meet his need for a suitable diet and (3.) failing to protect him from pain, injury, suffering and disease.


RSPCA inspector Clare Wilson said: “The house was filthy, with faeces and urine everywhere and rubbish strewn across every room.


“Cass had no access to food or water and, on top of both of these things, Cass had serious veterinary needs.


“Cass had previously suffered with seizures, which Black was aware of and was told needed treatment, but he moved out and left him behind in the property.”


In mitigation the court heard Black had been going through a difficult time and had moved back in with family.


As well as the disqualification, he was sentenced to a 12-month community order, 25 rehabilitation days, ordered to pay £300 costs and an £85 victim surcharge.


Cass has now been signed over to the RSPCA and hopefully will now be able to be rehomed.


Inspector Wilson said: “I’m dealing with more and more abandonment cases like this one.


“Abandoning an animal in this way is completely unacceptable.


“If you cannot attend to your pet for whatever reason, you must make arrangements for a responsible person to care for them in your absence.”