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Unlicensed pet shop owner found guilty

A Dewlish pet shop owner has been found guilty of offences under the Pet Animals Act 1951, following an investigation undertaken by the West Dorset District Council Dog Warden Service.

Mr David Parsons, 57, was found guilty of three offences relating to keeping keeping premises as a pet shop without a licence and one offence of selling an animal in a public place.

He was ordered to complete 180 hours unpaid work, pay costs of £1500 and compensation of a total of £309.60 after being prosecuted by West Dorset District Council.

Mr Parsons was also disqualified from holding a Pet Shop Licence for a period of 10 years.

He appeared in court last December where he was found guilty, following a trial, of three offences of breaching Section 1 of the Pet Animals Act 1951 and one offence of breaching Section 2 of the Pet Animals Act 1951.

He was sentenced at Poole Magistrates Court on 2 February 2017.

Four puppies were sold by Mr Parsons at a time he was already disqualified from keeping Pet Shop Licence owing to a previous offence committed in another area.

Two of the puppies appeared to have not been vaccinated, despite Mr Parsons assurance that they had. One of the puppies had to be treated for worms as it was passing large amounts of blood.

In a similar case, another puppy sold by Mr Parsons had to be treated for worms after having bleeding from the gut.

The fourth offence related to the sale of a puppy by Mr Parsons which then fell seriously ill and had to be euthanised the day after it was sold.

After the case, Councillor Alan Thacker, Community Safety & Access Portfolio Holder for West Dorset District Council, said: “This sends a strong message that people who run pet shops without a licence or who sell animals unlawfully will be prosecuted.

“That said, I’d like to stress that prosecutions are a last resort. We are committed to working with individuals to ensure that they are made aware of their responsibilities and the relevant legislation. If these rules are ignored, then we will take formal action.”

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