A woman from Stanley has been disqualified from keeping animals for five years after being convicted of failing to meet the needs of a British bulldog called Royston. 


Lauren Jane Eliot (D.O.B 02.08.1997) of Thomas Street, Annfield Plain, Stanley failed to appear before Newton Aycliffe Magistrates’ Court last week (Wednesday 11 March). She was convicted of one offence* under the Animal Welfare Act in absence.Royston in yard

RSPCA inspector Cathy Maddison said: “I had been to this property in April and given advice to the couple living there to clean up the yard where they said Royston – an 18-month-old British bulldog – was living in the daytime.


“I got another call about him in August and when I went the situation had deteriorated. Royston was lying on a mouldy sofa in the yard, which was full of hazards. He had lost weight, had red skin and his nails were long.


“Eliot said she was taking him to the vets so I advised that needed to happen and the yard needed to be tidied up but unfortunately when I went back over a week later neither had.


“The yard was even worse, with faeces everywhere, and the shed Royston was using for shelter had been filled with chairs so his only resting place was the now very wet sofa.


“Eliot agreed I could take Royston to the vets to be checked over where he was found to be underweight. The skin under his chin and neck appeared red raw, his ears were very dirty and he smelled bad. He was taken into possession by police on vet advice and placed in our care pending the outcome of our investigation.”


Royston recoveredThe court heard that the defendant had been left with the dog when she broke up with her partner and was not in a position to care for him.


As well as the disqualification order, she was deprived of Royston, fined £180.00 and ordered to pay £188 costs and £32.00 victim surcharge.


Inspector Maddison said: “Royston is now fully recovered and doing great (pictured right). He’s a fantastic dog, and I’m really happy that we’ll now be able to find a fantastic new forever home for him.”

*The full offence Eliot was convicted of is:

“That between 7th August 2019 and 28th August 2019 at an address onThomas Street, Annfield Plain, Stanley, you did not take such steps as were reasonable in all the circumstances to ensure that the needs of an animal, namely a tan and white British bulldog called Royston for which you were responsible, were met to the extent required by good practice in that you did not meet the animal’s need for a suitable environment and did not seek veterinary attention in respect of the dogs underweight condition, and skin and ear conditions, and did not therefore protect the animal from pain, suffering, injury or disease, contrary to Section 9, Subsection 1 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006”.