1. ITV Report

Suspended prison sentence for man caught on CCTV beating dog

Coco has now been re-homed. Photo: RSPCA

A man from Keswick has been given a suspended prison sentence for beating his dog.

David Nellist, 38, of Latrigg Close, was sentenced to two months in prison, suspended for 18 months, after he admitted causing unnecessary suffering to a young black cross-bred Spaniel called Coco.

The attack was captured by CCTV cameras. ITV Border has chosen not to show the footage, because some viewers may find it upsetting.

The footage shows the man grabbing the dog by its throat. Credit: RSPCA

He was also banned from keeping animals for five years, ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work and pay costs of £1,580, at Workington Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday 7 April.

In mitigation, the court heard that Mr Nellist was drunk at the time of the incident and was appalled by his actions.

An RSPCA representative says that if a neighbour had not alerted the authorities, things could have been worse:

There is no audio recorded on it, but it’s horrible to watch.

It’s not difficult to imagine what might have happened had it not been for the actions of the neighbour.”

– RSPCA inspector Martyn Fletcher

The attack took place at a small restaurant in Keswick on Monday January 19.

The neighbour was woken up by the sound of the dog, which "wasn't a bark but a scream".

Police initially left the restaurant after finding no injuries to the dog, but they called the RSPCA in to view the CCTV footage.

Coco was signed over to the RSPCA, and has now been re-homed.

I’ve seen her since and she’s like a different dog. She’s got a fantastic owner who has another dog too, and they’ve become great friends. She’s a really cheeky girl.”

– RSPCA inspector Martyn Fletcher

If you are worried about animal welfare, you can find out more on the RSPCA's website.