A woman from West Yorkshire has been found guilty of five cases of animal abuse after four rabbits and two guinea pigs were found dead at her home.
Rachel Louise Goodwin, 29, from Dewsbury, was convicted after four rabbits and two guinea pigs kept at her home were found dead.
She was due to appear before Kirklees Magistrates’ Court last Wednesday (15 August) but failed to attend so the case was heard in her absence.
Goodwin was found guilty of one count of causing unnecessary suffering and four counts of failing to meet the needs of the animals under the Animal Welfare Act.
The animals were discovered when a fifth rabbit, named Ginger, was found sitting under a car on Broomer Street on 2nd January 2018 and was picked up by an RSPCA officer.
Further enquiries led the officer to Goodwin’s address.
Kris Walker, RSPCA Inspector, said: “My colleague went to Goodwin’s house to see if the rabbit belonged to her but soon became concerned and I and the police attended.
“We were faced with an absolutely heartbreaking scene; the dead rabbits and guinea pigs were in hutches in the garden, some were much more decomposed than others so clearly some of them had been living there alongside the bodies.
“Veterinary evidence suggested one of the rabbits, called Spike, had been dead for around three days, while rabbits Rihanna and Selena had been dead for as little as 24 hours.
“Half of guinea pig Tinkerbell’s body was missing so it was impossible to say how long Tinkerbell had been dead."
Walker added: “The hutches were absolutely filthy and there was no food or water.”
“We presume that Ginger was loose and therefore had access to grass which is probably the reason for this rabbit’s survival.”
Ginger was signed over to the RSPCA and has since been rehomed.