Saturday 31 July 2021

Man banned from keeping animals for 10 years for a second time

John McKie, 68, has been banned from keeping animals for a further 10 years. He was exposed by a concerned person who reported to the RSPCA that he was keeping cats at his property. In December 2013 he was handed a 10-year ban on keeping animals after he had been cruelly neglected his German Shephard dog, Prince. The dog was found collapsed and infested with maggots. The dog was taken to a veterinarian who euthanised him.

John McKie has been banned from keeping animals for the second time
John McKie has been banned from keeping animals for the second time. Photo: Newcastle Chronicle.

On receiving the report, the RSPCA visited McKie's home at Thropton Terrace, Newcastle upon Tyne NE7, UK, to investigate. Inspector Kirsty Keogh-Laws found three cats inside his home. She advised him that as he was subject to a ban on keeping animals, the cats would have to be removed.

A couple of days later McKie admitted to a fourth cat at his property which was also taken into care. Three of the cats have been checked over and rehomed. A fourth, an elderly cat, had health problems and regrettably she was euthanised.

McKie appeared at Newcastle magistrates' Court on July 16 and pleaded guilty to breaching his animal disqualification order of 2013.

Comment: I wonder if the RSPCA veterinarian has been a little bit too eager to euthanise the elderly cat. I don't know. I'm guessing. But in these sorts of cases, I suspect that it is not uncommon to euthanise a companion animal when it is borderline whether they treat the animal and rehomed them or euthanise them. It would be a matter of cost to the RSPCA. I wonder how often the question of cost dictates whether they kill an animal or treat and rehome?

And the story highlights the difficulty in enforcing animal disqualification orders. How are they policed? It seems that the person who found out that he had animals knew that he was subject to a ban. But you'd have to know that somehow and it is unlikely that you would. I wonder for how long McKie had these cats? Years probably. They could have suffered. They were at risk.

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