Man who arranged cruel illegal dog ear cropping banned from keeping animals

A Nuneaton man has been banned from keeping animals after arranging for cruel illegal ear cropping. The RSPCA say he had posted photos of his XL bully dogs on Instagram - but then deleted them.

Warwick Crown Court heard last month that an RSPCA inspector visited the house of the man, who has not been identified, following a report about his dogs having cropped ears. Inspector Louise Marston said in a witness statement that, although he was not in during that visit, she saw two XL bullies in his garden and spotted that they had cropped ears.

But photos of the same dogs posted on social media just weeks earlier showed them with ears intact. Following the RSPCA’s initial visit, a search warrant with the police was obtained and, in September last year, inspector Marston, an RSPCA animal rescue officer, a council dog warden and a police officer went to his address.

During the raid, they found an ear splint and there was blood splatter across a wall in the dining room, which the RSPCA says was likely from one of the dogs shaking its head. A notebook was found on the man’s bed, with his Instagram profile name written on the first page, and also including a brief family history of each puppy along with “£5,500” written underneath their names.

Research by the RSPCA’s intelligence team concluded that images on the man’s social media pages of XL bully puppies - with their ears intact - were the same dogs. Enquiries also showed that the man had deleted posts, including images of the dogs as puppies.

Inspector Marston made enquiries with the man who sold the dogs to the suspect, who confirmed the dogs did not have cropped ears when they were sold, and added that he was unhappy that the dogs he bred ended up as they had.

The suspect was given a 15-year ban on keeping animals, as well as an 18-week prison sentence suspended for 18 months.