A couple has been found guilty of animal abuse for starving their Lurcher dog, Tiggy, to death. The case is extremely disturbing and has left investigators shocked at the level of cruelty.
When Kerry Patterson, aged 35, and Reece Milburn, aged 30, came across Tiggy, they claimed that the dog was abandoned on the roadside. They reported the matter to the local council. But, little did anyone know that the poor creature was going through the worst case of neglect. When an animal protection officer arrived at their place in Blyth, Northumberland, they were left horrified. The officer stated that in their 15 years of service, they had never seen such a heart-wrenching sight. Tiggy’s condition was beyond terrible. She had almost no fur left and her ribs were visible due to her emaciated body. Her dehydrated state, rashes, and mite infestation made matters worse, and she was so weak that she couldn’t even stand.
In December 2019, Tiggy’s heart-wrenching pictures were discovered, which quickly went viral. The Northumberland County Council appealed for information about her owners, and after a few days, received multiple letters identifying Patterson and Milburn as the owners. On March 3, the couple pleaded guilty to causing harm to a protected species, Tiggy, and neglecting their other dog, Enzo, a Staffordshire Bull Terrier, who was also suffering from a skin condition and mite infestation.
Patterson and Milburn have been given a 12-week prison sentence and are now banned from owning or taking care of any animals for the rest of their lives. They have also been ordered to pay a victim fee amounting to £120 each. The council’s representative, Philip Soderquest, described this case as one of the most horrendous and well-known examples of animal abuse in the county. The council’s diligent animal welfare team worked hard to investigate and prosecute the offenders.
After a wait of two long years, justice was finally given to Tiggy. Despite the tragic events that led up to this moment, hope was found through the hard work of the Berwick Animal Rescue Centre team. Tiggy, who now goes by a different name, has made a full recovery and has been taken in by a family who loves and cares for her, alongside some new dog friends.
At the moment, Enzo, the couple’s second dog, is still residing in a kennel, eagerly anticipating a permanent home where he can start anew and have a more promising future.