Man banned from having pets for verbally abusing his dog

A 23-year-old man has been banned from having pets after being charged with verbal abuse of dogs. 

Joshua Ponsford admitted his guilt to an animal welfare breach after he was charged by the RSPCA.

Animal charities filed a lawsuit against him after hearing recordings in which he verbally abused his Rottweiler Lulu.

Joshua was banned from having pets for 5 years by the Magistrates’ Court in Bristol on November 4.

In the sound clip, he can be heard saying:

“Get in your f**king bed now, go in your bed now, now, now you f**king stay there. You dirty little mutt.”

Later, a muddy scream can be heard before Joshua says:

“You and your f*cking ball dog. I’ve had enough of all your hiding toys

Another recording featured another example of Joshua’s mistreatment of Lulu.

He says:

“Going to walk to the shop again and get myself some bits. Don’t even think of robbing”

The dog can then be heard barking and whimpering.

In a third voice clip, the dog can be heard squealing as Joshua says:

“I’ll f*cking ave you”

In addition to a five-year ban on having pets that cannot be appealed for three years, Joshua has been given a six-week-long curfew. 

He also has to go through a 20-day rehabilitation and was fined £200 costs and a £90 victim surcharge.

Lulu has been given to the Bristol Animal Rescue Center.

Staff say she is a wonderful dog strongly attached to her caregiver and she will need time to adapt to her new situation before she finds a new family.

RSPCA inspector Miranda Albinson said:

“Throughout these recordings the male, who can be heard, is clearly angry and can be heard yelling at the dog.”

Joshua denied that he physically abused his dog, but admitted that his actions were inappropriate and that they caused Lulu emotional pain. 

Veterinarian David Martin said:

“It is my expert opinion that undoubtedly Lulu suffered as a result of mental fear and terror as a result of the verbal abuse from Mr Ponsford as demonstrated on the audio recordings.

It is well known and understood by the public that dogs respond to the tone and volume of the voice and that dogs are susceptible and will suffer from fear and distress if verbally abused particularly if this is recurrent or long lasting.

Training and discipline of dogs is nowadays recognised as needing to be reward based so that positive achievements are rewarded and that negative behaviour is ignored and not reacted to.

Physical and verbal abuse is no longer acceptable as part of dog training as it has been shown to be both ineffective and to cause the dog long term distress.”

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