Bristol dog on road to recovery after brutal ear cropping experience

  • Watch Jacquie Bird's report

A dog is on the road to recovery with a family in Devon after having its ears cropped.

Bulldog Zeus underwent the illegal procedure alongside his eight brothers and sisters in Bristol.

The dogs were rescued by the RSPCA in January, while owner Adam Malik, of Alcove Road, was jailed for 14 weeks.

The 29-year-old was also banned from owning dogs for 15 years.

Zeus was found with his eight brothers and sisters, piled on top of each other in a pen. Credit: RSPCA

Zeus is now living with foster parents Carl and Hollie Bennett in Newton Abbot, who say he is making a good recovery.

"I don't understand how someone could do that to a dog," Hollie said.

"He is such a sweet dog, he's perfect really. People are quite afraid to touch his ears but he actually quite likes his ears being stroked."

Carl and Hollie Bennett say they have received abuse because of how Zeus looks. Credit: ITV News West Country

What is ear cropping?

Ear cropping is a cosmetic procedure which is illegal in the UK and is performed without anaesthetic or pain relief.

It is designed to make pets look more menacing and intimidating.

Over the past six years, the RSPCA has seen a 621% increase of dogs with cropped ears.

The charity says this is fuelled by a number of different factors, such as:

  • An increase in high profile celebrities owning dogs with cropped ears

  • An increase in the popularity of certain breeds which traditionally have cropped ears

Samantha Gaines, from the RSPCA

Samantha Gaines, from the RSCPA, explained: "We are told by people that advocate for ear cropping that this is a procedure that doesn't cause pain, that doesn't require pain relief and in some situations, doesn't even require anaesthesia.

"But this is a very painful and unnecessary mutilation of dogs and, in this situation, this was nine puppies who have been put through really unnecessary pain and they may well be impacted for the rest of their lives."

The Government has today (12 May) announced plans to ban the import of dogs with cropped ears, a move that has been welcomed by the RSPCA.

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