Live updates

Lancashire MP's cat is poisoned

MP Graham Jones's cat Jaffa which was posioned Credit: MEN Syndication

A Lancashire MP has spoken of his horror after his cat was poisoined by a serial cat killer.

Hyndburn MP Graham Jones’s long haired ginger tom Jaffa is among five pets who have died after eating food was poisoned with anti-freeze.

The deaths have all occurred on two Baxenden streets over a period of 11 months. Mr Jones urged people to be vigilant.

He said:

Our cat was in absolute agony and had to be put down.

Watching your pet put to sleep in front of you is a very emotional experience.

The number of deaths in the immediate area is very suspicious.

The cats are being attracted to food or water that has been poisoned with anti freeze.

It is very difficult to investigate and to prove that someone is doing this so I would urge the public to be vigilant.

I think animal cruelty is abhorrent and I hope whoever is doing this is caught.

– Graham Jones MP



"Deliberate" cruelty to animals on the rise

Complaints of animal cruelty in the north west have gone up for the second year in a row. The animal charity, RSPCA, say there have been some very violent and often quite shocking incidents particularly in Greater Manchester and Lancashire.

Deliberate cruelty against pets is on the rise Credit: PA

Some of the more disturbing cases included a puppy that was filmed being thrown, kicked and his head trapped in a door. Also a cat was hit by a car and a passer by then kicked the animal like a football several times. In 2014, the RSPCA looked at more than 8000 complaints in Greater Manchester and 5200 incidents in Lancashire.

“Most of the complaints we receive involve animals being neglected or not receiving the right care. However, it is shocking that in 2014 people are still being deliberately cruel in what can be disturbingly inventive ways.”

– James Yeates, RSPCA Chief Veterinary Officer

Woman jailed for cruelty to cats locked in cages for TWO years

Jailed - Pauline Casey Credit: MEN

A woman who left a family of cats to live in cramped and filthy crates for two years has been jailed and banned for life from keeping animals.

Pauline Casey, 51, allowed the eight traumatised cats to reach such a state of filth and ill health that they were emaciated and on death’s door.

All the cats were 'filthy' - vet Credit: RSPCA

Left untouched for 20 hours a day in a crate with no bedding and let out only to eat, they were forced to live in their own faeces and urine – completely at odds with a cat’s instinct to keep clean.

Such was their ‘horrendous’ state, the vet who examined them said their case was the worst he’d seen in 30 years.

In a statement read out in court, vet Angus MacKenzie, said: “All the cats were in a filthy state when they were recovered, covered with faeces and urine.

Some of the cats may never recover Credit: RSPCA

“Their mental state is such that they may never recover.”

He said their ‘horrific ordeal’ had left them seriously underweight, with one at starvation point.

All eight – four male and four female – had ear infections and their matted skin and fur was so filthy that not even fleas were prepared to live on it.

Not even fleas would live on some of the cats Credit: RSPCA

He described their tails as ‘matted ropes’ and their feet were swollen and sore.

It took two nurses 40 minutes to clean each cat. After their rescue, seven cats made a remarkable recovery. One had to be put down.

Appearing before Manchester Magistrates' Court, Casey admitted three counts of causing unnecessary suffering and four of failure to provide for the animals’ needs.

The court heard a visitor to Casey’s home on Bulrush Close, Worsley, spotted the cats.

At first, Casey lied saying they were in the crate for the RSPCA to pick up. But the RSPCA had no record of this and an inspector visited the house.

Prosecuting, David McCormick told the court: “She showed the officer a bedroom and the front of the property and the door had to be forced open.

“There were eight cats. They were filthy, smelly and thin. They had clearly been neglected.” Casey also showed the officer a cockatiel in another room, in a filthy cage living in its own faeces.

Defending, Caroline Wilbraham said remorseful

Some of the cats have made a remarkable recovery Credit: RSPCA

Casey was the sole carer for her both her terminally ill mother and her disabled sister. She said Casey’s original two cats had had kittens and she had become overwhelmed and unsure how to deal with them.

She said she had locked up the cats to keep them away from her mother’s medical equipment and had not been ‘intentionally’ cruel.

Jailing Casey for six weeks, chairman of the bench Lesley Pickup told Casey: “You have kept cats for 18 years and you understand particularly well the level of care needed.” She said the cats had endured prolonged suffering and one had to be put down as a result.''

Ultra rare lobster arrives in Manchester

Theodore the albino lobster Credit: Sea Life Manchester

A one-in-a-hundred-million albino lobster is to make his home at Sea Life Manchester. Theodore, as he's been named at the centre, was due to end up in a cooking pot before being spared that fate by Sea Life staff.

Credit: Sea Life Manchester

The lobster, which was found off the coast of Weymouth, has an absence of colour due to a lack of melanin. This extremely rare phenomenon causes the white colouring.

Elderly dog found tied to park railings

Abandoned German Shepherd is being cared for at an animal hospital Credit: RSPCA

An elderly dog that was abandoned at a park in Manchester is being cared for at an animal hospital. The black and tan German Shepherd was found tied to railings at the entrance to Platt Fields Park at about 11.50 on Saturday morning. It is not known how long he had been there.

The dog’s eyes were badly ulcerated and he was arthritic and underweight. He was wearing a black fabric collar but had no ID tag or microchip to identify him.

“This poor dog was desperately in need of some care and veterinary attention. But instead he had just been left on his own at the very time he really needed somebody.

“We know that sometimes it can be hard to afford veterinary care for your pets, but a caring owner should not be abandoning their animals like this.

“We want to hear from anyone who may have seen someone walking or leaving this dog or even someone whose friend or relative might have had a dog like this one until very recently.”

– Natalie Avery, RSPCA Inspector

Anyone with information is asked to contact the RSPCA inspector appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

Load more updates