A man named Glen Hayes from Gillingham was found guilty of breeding and selling sick animals for profit during the Christmas season. He was convicted of ten counts of animal offences and recently appeared in court for sentencing. The RSPCA’s Special Operations Unit joined forces with the Metropolitan Police in January to investigate Hayes’ activities, after receiving complaints from people who had purchased puppies from his address. Upon searching the property in Bexleyheath, they discovered 38 dogs and 18 cats living in unsanitary conditions in makeshift pens and cages. Among the breeds found were Newfoundlands, Dachshunds, French bulldogs, and Shih Tzus. Shockingly, one of the Newfoundlands had deformed legs and couldn’t walk, while many of the other dogs were covered in mud, faeces, and dirt on their matted coats.
During the raid, officers found that several dogs were suffering from serious dental problems, while others had docked tails. Furthermore, a large number of dogs had developed infections in their eyes or ears due to accumulated hair and wax. The inspection was accompanied by an independent veterinarian who expressed that the condition of the animals was among the worst that he had ever come across.
According to Inspector Carroll Lamport of RSPCA, they have received multiple complaints from individuals who have bought puppies and became doubtful of the operation being carried out from a house in Bexleyheath. Buyers expressed their concerns that they were not allowed to explore beyond the living room when they visited the house to see the puppies. Moreover, many of those who purchased dogs reported that their pets had become ill in no time. Unfortunately, some of these newly acquired pet puppies have passed away.
The RSPCA had gotten six complaints about Basset hounds, dachshunds, and a boxer before their search. Unfortunately, one of the dachshund puppies had passed away on Christmas Day due to parvovirus. Upon arrival, Inspector Lamport noted that everything was covered in filth and mud, which was revolting. The dogs were all caked in grime, and there was no escape from the damp, unclean environment. Furthermore, the cats were being held in small pens, with two adults and a kitten found cramped in a tiny rabbit hutch-like container.
The chaos of the house and garden was undeniable, but the living room, which was the only area open to potential buyers, was spotless and well-maintained. Although Mr. Hayes had a hand in caring for the animals, he should have realized that keeping them in such appalling conditions was unacceptable. Luckily, we were able to rescue these delightful cats and dogs, who will now be able to enjoy better and healthier lives. As a result, all of our furry friends have either been adopted or are awaiting new homes under the care of foster families.
According to Lisa Hens, a specialist in dog welfare at RSPCA, it is sad to know that there are some dishonest traders who will increase their activities before Christmas and take advantage of families who want to adopt a dog. It is unfortunate that many families may have to grieve the loss of their new puppy during the holiday season instead of welcoming a new member to their household.
Hayes received a lifelong ban from owning animals and received a suspended prison sentence of 20 weeks that will last for 18 months. As part of his punishment, he must complete 250 hours of community service and pay a fine of £3,500, as well as a victim surcharge of £115.