SURRENDERED: Kelpie cross General will be found a new home.
SURRENDERED: Kelpie cross General will be found a new home. Contributed

Man banned, fined after beating dog with length of pipe

THE RSPCA has welcomed a decision by a local magistrate to ban a New Auckland man from owning dogs for a year.

Anthony Phillip Carroll, 46, pleaded guilty to three counts of animal cruelty at Gladstone Magistrates Court yesterday after he was caught beating his dog with a length of poly pipe.

The dog, a nine-month-old black and tan kelpie cross named General, was confiscated by RSPCA inspectors in January after they received reports Mr Carroll had been seen or heard beating the dog with the pipe three times in a week.

General yelped in pain on each occasion, witnesses said.

Acting on behalf of the RSPCA, barrister Jordan Ahlstrand told the court Mr Carroll was uncooperative with police when they first arrived at his house, refusing to provide identification and just telling them his dog had run away so he "flogged it with a stick".

When a search warrant was later executed at his house, he told the RSPCA inspector and police officers they were "lesbians who just need a d--k".

Mr Carroll later apologised for his behaviour, telling police his previous dog had died after being hit by a car, so he hit General with the pipe when he got out to make sure he would not run onto the road again.

Opposing the RSPCA's application for Mr Carroll to be forced to permanently give up General, defence lawyer Jun Pepito said Mr Carroll had used the pipe because it was light and made a loud sound, but had not thought it would inflict a lot of pain on the animal.

Mr Pepito said his client, who had no criminal history, was going through some personal issues at the time of the incident, and he relied on the dog for companionship.

He said his client had since received a significant amount of counselling and was now in a better place.

But magistrate Dennis Kinsella, while noting the progress Mr Carroll had made, said he was not convinced on the balance of probability that he would not reoffend if General was returned to him.

He fined Mr Carroll $2500 in total for the three offences and found him liable for $2999.24 in the RSPCA's operational costs, plus $350 in legal fees and $96.15 in court costs.

He also banned Mr Carroll from owning dogs for 12 months and ordered General be found another home.

No conviction was recorded.

RSPCA prosecutions inspector Tracey Jackson said she was pleased with the decision, especially the fact the ongoing welfare of the dog had been taken into account.

"General can now move on and find a loving home, rather than being forced to return to the home of the man who beat him," Ms Jackson said.

  • Anyone who witnesses animal cruelty to report it to the RSPCA online or by calling 1300 ANIMAL (1300 264 625).