Two men who repeatedly attacked Staffordshire bull terrier during holiday at Yorkshire caravan park are banned from keeping dogs

Two cousins have been banned from keeping dogs for a total of 25 years after they repeatedly slapped, punched and kicked a dog at a caravan park in East Yorkshire in front of shocked holidaymakers.

Liam Tattershall, 21, of Russell Street, Hull and Luke Harrison, 28, of Weighton Grove, Hull, were both seen to attack the Staffordshire bull terrier called Patchy on multiple occasions in September 2020 at Skipsea Sands, near Driffield.

Three witnesses each saw the terrified pet being abused by the pair and reported the matter to the RSPCA, Beverley Magistrates’ Court heard on Monday December 20.

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Tattershall pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to Patchy and was given a 10-year ban on keeping dogs while Harrison was found guilty in his absence and was given a 15-year ban.

One witness told how as she arrived at the campsite she saw Harrison punch Patchy - who was tethered - three times causing him to cower to the ground. Later that day he was again seen to approach the dog and hit him forcefully on its head three times, causing the dog to yelp on each occasion.

The following day she saw Tattershall hit Patchy while he was tied up on the head twice. He then kicked the dog with force in the ribs. The dog was yelping each time he was hit.

On the third day of her stay the witness saw shadows in the tent and could make out Harrison kicking the dog with force. She could hear thuds and yelps and could see the shadow of his foot making contact with the dog while he was shouting at the pet.

The witness confronted them and alerted security staff.

In a statement, the witness said the pair defended their actions by saying that Patchy had been misbehaving and had defecated in the tent so Harrsion said he had “battered it”. The witness offered to take the dog into care but the pair refused.

The following day she could hear thuds and yelps and it appeared as if the dog was pushed up against the windbreak outside the tent.

Two other holidaymakers reported seeing similar attacks on the dog - and said that both men were constantly telling Patchy to ‘lie down’; if he didn't they would attack him. The dog appeared to be cowering and fearful whenever they approached him.

The incidents were reported to the RSPCA and animal rescue inspector Jilly Dickinson was sent to the holiday park to investigate along with police who seized Patchy, aged five at the time.

Patchy has remained in the care of the RSPCA's York, Harrogate and district branch since he was seized. He is doing well and will be available for rehoming soon.

Inspector Dickinson said: “Patchy was seen to be forcefully hit, punched and kicked on numerous occasions.

“This would have caused physical pain, fear and distress which is evidenced in his behaviour. He was seen yelping and crying, crouching and cowering every time he was intimidated -physically or verbally.

“He has been in our care since he was seized and is such a lovely friendly dog, he looks so smiley and happy now in spite of what he has been through.

“I am so pleased he is doing so well and he will be ready to find his forever home soon.”

As well as a 15-year ban on keeping dogs Harrison was given a 12-week jail sentence suspended for 18 months, was ordered to carry out a 15-day rehabilitation activity requirement and 80 hours of unpaid work as well as pay £750 costs

Tattershall was a 10-year ban on keeping dogs, a 12-week jail sentence suspended for 18 months, a 15-day rehabilitation activity requirement and 60 hours of unpaid work as well being ordered to pay £400 costs.

In mitigation the court was told that Tattershall should be given credit for his guilty plea and that Harrison’s behaviour had been 'uncharacteristic' and he hoped to own dogs in the future