Man jailed after shooting pet dog

Cross-breed Rocky was shot six times and hit over the head with a shovel. Credit: PA Images

A man has been jailed after he left his dog to die in a ditch after shooting it six times and hitting the animal with a shovel.

Marc Turnbull shot cross-breed Rocky five times in the head and hit it with a shovel in an attempt to kill the dog.

The 38-year-old, from Northampton, claimed inflicting the injuries was his only option after he failed to find another home for the dog.

Magistrates heard Turnbull shot the dog with an air rifle, battered him with a spade and left the dog in a ditch on the A5 near Weedon, Northamptonshire, on April 21 this year.

Rocky was found by a member of the public three days later. He had severe head injuries and x-rays showed he had been shot five times in the head and once in the leg.

He also had a large open wound on the back of his head which was down to the ridge of the skull and had been caused by a blow to the head.

Turnbull, who was traced due to the dog being microchipped, admitted three charges of causing unnecessary suffering to Rocky.

He was jailed for 20 weeks at Northampton Magistrates' Court on Tuesday. He was also banned from keeping animals for 20 years.

Rocky survived his injuries and has since been rehomed by the RSPCA.

RSPCA inspector Michelle McNab said: "This was a truly unbelievable case that involved immense suffering to the dog.

"Fortunately, Rocky was found and amazingly he survived. He has since been rehomed to a loving family."