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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Co Antrim man sentenced after pleading guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to dog

Ballymena Court House


A man has been sentenced at Ballymena Magistrates’ Court on Friday, September 1, for causing unnecessary suffering to his Whippet pup.


The charges were brought against Danny McVicker, of the Lime Park, Ballymoney, by Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council under the Welfare of Animals Act (NI) 2011.


Proceedings followed an investigation by Council’s Animal Welfare Officer, who received footage of Mr McVicker dragging the dog into the garden and striking the dog three times on its side with a stick, before losing control of the dog and following it around the garden waving the stick apparently trying to catch it in May 2022.

A warrant was executed, and the dog was seized by the animal welfare officer.


The Whippet known as ‘Willow’ was examined by Council’s own vet, who advised:

“The video evidence provided shows the dog is suffering. This is an unacceptable way to treat or discipline a dog.”


District Judge imposed a fine of £300 and other costs of £134. An application by Council to disqualify the defendant from keeping of animals was granted by the court for a period of 2 years.


Commenting on the case, Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens, Councillor Steven Callaghan said:

“Council gives a high priority to the welfare of domestic pets and horses and operates a rigorous enforcement policy to ensure full compliance of regulatory requirements.


“Complaints are investigated thoroughly and where necessary formal action is taken, which may include the service of Improvement Notices, or in extreme cases, seizure of animals. The Council may also prosecute for offences such as in this case which I hope serves as a warning to anyone who does not take appropriate care of animals.”


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