Woman fined for leaving cats home alone

editorial image

A woman who left her cats home alone while she visited her boyfriend has been banned for keeping animals for two years.

Kirklees Magistrates’ Court was told RSPCS officers went into Naomi Mary Ann Ramsey’s home to find her two cats, Jonah and Tabitha, in a flat smelling of faeces and urine.

A neighbour contacted the RSPCA after becoming concerned about two cats shut inside a flat on Gledhill Terrace, Dewsbury, in October last year.

RSPCA inspectors visited Ramsey’s home on several occasions over four days to check on the welfare of the cats, the court heard.

After the first visit, on October 10, they put seals on the locks and door frame but when an officer returned a day later, they found the seals had not been broken, suggesting nobody had been into the property.

Andrew Davidson, prosecuting, said: “An officer attended on October 14 and when he looked through the letter box, he could see all the doors going through the hallway in the property were shut. There were brown smears up the walls.”

The inspector called the police who contacted Ramsey and she said she would return later that day. An RSPCA inspector visited her home in the afternoon to find the tape had been broken.

Mr Davidson said: “They entered the property to find a strong smell of faeces and urine. The hallway was dirty and since she had been away there was no one looking after the cats.”

A tour of the flat also revealed rubbish and personal belongings were found all over the floor.

Mr Davidson said on examination the two cats were fine and to be in good health.

He said: “We showed the pictures to the vet who said the conditions were unacceptable. The litter tray had not been emptied for a number of days and she said if they had been left for a longer period of time there would be a strong possibility they would have suffered from illness.”

Mr Davidson added: “There was no deliberate mistreatment of the cats but the conditions did have the potential to put both cats at risk.”

Elena Reyland, mitigating, said Ramsey had been staying with her boyfriend in Huddersfield and accepted the conditions were not acceptable.

She said: “Miss Ramsey had previously been on holiday to France and asked a neighbour to look after the cats.

“She forgot she had the spare key for the flat so the neighbour could not look after the cats at that point. She did say there was adequate food and water available for the cats.”

Both cats were taken into care by the RSPCA.

Ramsay admitted failing to ensure her animals’ welfare and was disqualified from owning, keeping, dealing or transporting animals for two years.

She was also ordered to pay £250 in costs.