A magistrate and her daughter from Leigh have been convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to two West Highland white terriers.

Gail Bradshaw – a magistrate at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court for the past 30 years who has deliberated on RSPCA cases – and Nicola Bradshaw appeared before Preston Magistrates’ Court for a two-day trial on Monday.

They were found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to a West Highland white terrier called ‘Poppy’ and causing unnecessary suffering to a West Highland white terrier called ‘Holly’, by failing to provide proper and necessary care and attention for their chronic and severe skin conditions.

The court heard that visits to the vets with Poppy in 2014 and 2015 established the cause of her fur loss and skin infection but the Bradshaws were inconsistent in following the treatment plans.

When the advice was followed improvements were seen but the lack of consistency in following the treatment properly would cause Poppy to deteriorate again. A new treatment plan was put in place in March 2015 by the vet with the advice to return in seven to ten days, but Poppy was never taken back.

RSPCA Inspector Vicki McDonald said:

“The severity of the skin conditions and fur loss suffered by these dogs was the worst I’ve seen in my 15-year career.They were in an absolutely shocking state.
When I first saw Poppy she was wearing a filthy baby jumper. Gail Bradshaw said she put it on her to keep her warm and to stop her scratching herself raw. When the vet tried to remove the jumper it had stuck to Poppy’s weeping skin around her armpits, chest and front legs.”

Poppy and Holly are currently in the care of the RSPCA pending the outcome of the case, since arriving their conditions have improved rapidly.


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