The Hobart Magistrates Court recently sentenced a Bridgewater man to 2 months imprisonment, suspended, having found him guilty of cruelty to a Husky dog.

Robert Francis Shevlin was the owner of a Husky called Blizzard, which was found by RSPCA inspectors in a poor condition. His ribcage, hips and spine were clearly visible. The RSPCA prosecuted Mr Shevlin for cruelty to animals. The Hobart Magistrates Court heard evidence from a vet who inspected Blizzard. The vet said Blizzard was in poor body condition, and that condition suggested he had been malnourished for a period of several weeks before the inspectors seized him. He noted Blizzard was about half his normal body weight. The RSPCA provided proper nutrition and veterinary care for Blizzard, and 4 months after he was seized, he had almost doubled his body weight. Magistrate Reg Marron, who heard the case, said he was satisfied that Mr Shevlin had seen Blizzard two weeks before the RSPCA inspectors found the dog and had not made proper arrangements to ensure that Blizzard was properly looked after.

The Court ordered that Mr Shevlin pay the RSPCA the majority of its costs incurred in looking after Blizzard, and also banned Mr Shevlin from keeping any dogs for the next ten years.