Seized pups returned to Morecambe dog breeder who left them without food or water for 6 days

A Morecambe dog breeder who left her pups without food and water for six days and had her dog breeding licence revoked by Lancaster City Council has got her dogs back.

Emily Sutcliffe had licenced dog breeding premises on Coastal Road, Hest Bank and had held a dog breeding licence for one year.

After officers from Lancaster City Council kicked the doors down on the premises a total of 16 adult dogs and nine puppies were taken into care.

During the raid on June 7 at the premises, officers found 15 dogs of various breeds with no light, no water, no food, and heavily soiled bedding in one stable block. In the second block which had similar conditions, two puppies were inside the first pen, a second pen contained a mum and five pups, and a third had two older puppies inside.

Seized pups left without food or water for six days have been returned to a Morecambe dog breeder (photo: adobe)

According to a report which will go before the council’s licensing committee: “Ms Sutcliffe stated that a friend was meant to be looking after the dogs, but has not been formally interviewed or asked for an explanation for the conditions and breaches noted.”

“She has been informed she will be asked to attend a formal interview under caution, and this will be her opportunity to answer specific questions and explain what happened. “Due to the severity of the welfare failings and number of breaches of the licence, it is intended to prepare a prosecution file for this incident.”

It is believed she had left the country for six days when officers visited. Among the various breaches of the licence, officer say she had failed to provide a suitable and clean environment; left the dogs unattended for more than four hours; failed to provide constant access to clean water or opportunities to exercise or interact with people. A further concern was raised over the size of one of the kennels.

In a letter to Ms Sutcliffe dated June 13, community health and protection officer Mark Woodhead tells her of the decision to revoke her licence to breed dogs.

A report will be presented to the licensing committee on June 30.

A spokesman for Lancaster City Council said: “Responding to concerns raised by a member of the public earlier this month, the council’s animal licencing service visited two sites, one in Overton and another in Hest Bank, and based on the circumstances at the time action was taken to remove a number of adult dogs and puppies to safeguard their welfare.

"Some of the dogs were taken for veterinary assessment before being transferred to a local kennels to allow time to carry out an investigation.

"Based on the findings at the time, the licence to breed dogs was revoked for both operators. There is a right of appeal against the revocation.

“The council has been in discussions with the owners of the dogs, and reviewing legal options available to safeguard the future welfare of the dogs.

"Working with the owners, and having been satisfied that the facilities on site are now suitable, it has been agreed to return the majority of the dogs.

"The council’s animal licencing team will continue to monitor the condition and welfare of the dogs by unannounced visits and has requested confirmation of the intentions for rehoming and long term care of the animals.”