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If You Saw This... What Would You Do?

(29 Posts)
JoffreyBaratheon Mon 22-Feb-16 22:22:56

A while ago, I posted about something I saw a few months back. (Probably posted on AIBU for traffic). I'm posting again because I can't help thinking there is something that could still be done about it. Also - due to something I saw on FB, the other day.

Briefly, I was ill in bed with flu when my family were out, and I was woken up by hearing my neighbour on her front drive, screaming "Get out of the effing car now!" Thinking she was attacking her kids again (many calls to SS and NSPCC, resulting in total denials, and nothing ever done), I looked out of the window thinking I better witness whatever it was, this time.

I had been asleep so my phone was downstairs. It happened so quickly I couldn't go get my phone. I should say - the police had already looked into the neighbours' pasts, and wouldn't tell us the details but said they have a criminal record and are dangerous to approach, so we should not speak to them directly in any way if we saw something. The only reason I didn't ring the police is - I rang the RSPCA and contacted the NSPCC.

I saw the woman lift their large black lab out of the boot of the car (family saloon car, no dog compartment - literally it was shut in the boot), and throw it to the concrete floor. Where the man neighbour kicked it hard in the stomach 4 times. Really hard. Their child (aged about 3?) stood between them watching impassively.

Needless to say it is the single worst thing I have ever seen in my life and I have been haunted by it ever since.

RSPCA came out but the upshot was, she denied everything and they said because only I saw it and not another, separate, neighbour and because I hadn't filmed it - there was nothing they could do. No mark on the dog but the inspector did tell me on the phone afterwards that is not unusual. They recently got a man near here 6 months behind bars for precisely the same act, also denied, also not a mark or wound on the dog. But a neighbour filmed it.

So the bottom line with the RSPCA is - if you didn't film it; it never happened.

A week or so later we saw the man burying the dog about a foot, or less down, and near his back door. (Using a kiddies' seaside spade and stamping up and down madly on it after the first thin sprinkling of soil). I rang RSPCA and they would have come out and necropsied, only they discovered the neighbours had been 'backwards and forwards' the entire last week or two of its life, to the vet's. It was PTS with advanced cancer. It must have been ill a long time - obviously on the day a week or so before when I saw them hurting it.

It turned out that the RSPCA had called after my phone call but finding no-one in, left a note. The neighbours must have panicked, rushed the dog to the PDSA vet, then had that last week of its life, took it back and forth to make it look like they were concerned owners. Vet had PTS that morning - my son and I saw the man stamping up and down on the dead dog that afternoon. RSPCA had finally made it out to visit, a couple of days before where they fell for the story.

Neighbours denied everything and the RSPCA accepted they must be good owners as they'd gone back and forth to the vet (AFTER they had the RSPCA's calling card...) I said, well if it had cancer, doesn't that make it worse that they were throwing it to the ground and kicking it? Apparently as I didn't film it, it doesn't count as cruelty.

Now the other day I saw my neighbour's FB and her picture is now this dog's. Under it a load of morons posting their sympathy and her milking it. I'd love to find a way to expose these people for the cruel arses they really are. But there is no way I can do that.

Yet... I know what I saw.

I can't get it out of my mind. And now to see the hypocrisy of someone asking for sympathy for the death of a dog I saw her, with my own eyes, hurt and hurt badly... The inspector did say "They all say 'I love my dog, I'd never hurt him!'" and I can understand why they need hard proof. Well sort of. Because I didn't film it, it did still happen... (I contacted the NSPCC about the child seeing all this, btw and it looks like no social worker has come out, or anything). That is the other disturbing aspect of this that abusers an carry it off as 'malicious neighbours' if anyone does see something. The child's utter blankness and lack of reaction freaked me out the most, at the time. Sod's Law would have it my other (nice) neighbours were busy when this happened and heard and saw nothing.

I'm wondering - is there anything else that can be done, if the RSPCA couldn't act? I'm still having nightmares and now terrified my own dog could escape and if she ended up in their garden...

TheFlyingFauxPas Mon 22-Feb-16 22:58:03

No wonder this haunts you 😞 The dog is now at peace thank goodness. It's unbelievably despicable that any human could treat an animal like that.

stonecircle Tue 23-Feb-16 11:29:45

Joffrey - what despicable evil scum. No advice I'm afraid - it sounds like you've explored every avenue. Well done for trying to intervene. I'm so sorry you witnessed something so truly horrific. I have 2 black labs and they are the loveliest, most trusting, faithful, gentle and intelligent creatures imaginable. I feel sick to the core having read your post.

And that poor child.

LaurieLemons Tue 23-Feb-16 11:44:32

WTF this is awful sad. They really do deserve to be exposed, if they got another dog I think I would find myself with a video recorder on standby at all times. Unfortunately nothing you can do now apart from give her a piece of your mind (which probably won't help). Poor dog is at peace now at least. What disgusting people!!!

pigsDOfly Tue 23-Feb-16 13:21:48

All you can do now Joffrey is try to put this out of your mind - hard I know - and accept that you did everything you could at the time. The dog is at peace now, so that's one good thing.

It horrible that you had to see that. There truly are some vile people in the world.

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 13:29:06

Hang on - do you know for sure the dog had cancer or was that just what they told the RSPCA?

If the latter, I would be calling the police and asking someone to do a post mortem.

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 13:29:41

Also it isn't legal to bury a large dog in your garden AFAIK. something to do with the water course.

Owllady Tue 23-Feb-16 13:35:12

You are allowed to bury them in your back garden in the UK
Poor dog sad

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 13:46:40

Our vet said we weren't allowed to and it was only a chicken. She said she wouldn't mention it to anyone.

Owllady Tue 23-Feb-16 13:51:30

You can't bury chickens in your garden as they are considered as livestock and fall under defra regulations (or something)

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 13:54:06

I'm not sure they do - I looked into the whole defra thing when we got them. You don't need to register them or anything.

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 13:58:18

Oh you are right. Sorry.

Owllady Tue 23-Feb-16 15:39:30

You don't have to apologise! smile you only have to register if your flock is a certain size

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 15:53:06

<looks out of window at solitary chicken>

Unless she suddenly summons 49 mates over on Whatsapp, I think we're safe grin

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 23-Feb-16 16:00:50

Whilst the law states that you can't bury your pet in your garden the environment secretary at the time on the law went on record to say that no one would be prosecuted for burying their pet in their garden. Chickens, however are classed as farm animals in this context.
Regarding the cancer and the RSPCA these details would have been confirmed with the vet treating the dog.
It is exceptionally hard to get a conviction for animal cruelty and in 28 years I have been the first opinion vet on 10s of cases, but there has only been two convictions. In those two cases we had date stamped photographic evidence each time.

Owllady Tue 23-Feb-16 16:01:17

I've only got one left too. She'll be my last one for quite a while I think. I get too attached to them, then upset.

Sorry for thread hijack blush

Op, I really don't know what else you can do tbh

JoffreyBaratheon Tue 23-Feb-16 17:50:04

Sarah when I rang the RSPCA I opted to be rung back with the 'outcome'. They didn't call me back at the time as it was still ongoing - the dog died about a fortnight or 10 days after I saw them attack it.

As I said, they came out and no-one in (except presumably the dog who was left alone in the house for hours most days, and never once walked). They left a calling card and returned when the woman was there alone. She reassured the RSPCA she was the world's best dog owner, and as the Inspector could see no visible marks, they left it at that. Also she told the Inspector she was back and forth all week to the vet - the PDSA vet in town. So she must be a caring dog owner. The Inspector rang the PDSA vet, to confirm. The dog was operated on that week but too late to save it. Apparently the cancer was advanced, and it must have been ill for a long time (having never been taken to the vet's until the RSPCA gave warning they were coming).

I was told all this the afternoon the dog died as I rang the RSPCA again when I saw the bizarre kiddies'-spade-burial ceremony. I assumed, not knowing it was ill, that they had killed it. The RSPCA operator told e they would treat it as an emergency and rush out and necropsy the dog. But apparently the Inspector, when she got the message, rang the PDSA vet to check and the vet told her he'd PTS the lab, that morning.

So the RSPCA won't necropsy. I suspect the elaborate stamping up and down on the body was to cove it in bruises and break all its bones. Just in case someone did get suspicious. Sorry to be so graphic.

So later she knew what happened, the Inspector phoned me with the whole story. I must admit she did sound like she believed me by the end of the conversation, and when I told her the police had said - after an incident last summer - that they'd run a risk assessment and no-one here should approach or speak to these people, because reasons.

The Inspector then said she had a mate in the police who could look them up. Out of interest as she could not do anything more, given the fact there was only one witness, utter denial, and no mark on the dog.

If you know a middle aged wizened little bald man married to a greasy ponytailed young woman, who had a black lab called 'Tyson' in North Yorkshire (large county so I'm not IDing them, right?) then you should not believe all you are seeing on FB.

People who love their dogs don't throw them to the floor and watch a man - and allow their child to watch a man - kick the crap out of it.

(Presumably poor old Tyson was too ill to climb out of the boot hence the beating).

We heard them (they have incredibly loud voices) out on their drive saying they wished they had a 'Japanese [si] Akita' and the woman was telling a visitor: "We don't want any of that rescue shit."

JoffreyBaratheon Tue 23-Feb-16 17:58:06

Lonecat - my 13 year old was home from school ill and we heard the digging and went to look out of his bedroom window. I had this awful feeling it would be the poor dog. (Or, gods forbid, one of the toddlers' legs sticking out from under the blanket).

It was a bizarre sight - a grown man with a kiddies' seaside spade, digging a one foot deep hole for a fully grown black lab...

I think when he dumped it in the hole it was probably very close to the surface.

It was buried in the only spot in their garden our window overlooks. We wouldn't have seen a thing if he's buried it anywhere else.

Worse still, it is buried just a metre or two from where they have their BBQs all summer, where their kids play, and it's a bit of bare/gravelly soil just say 3 M from their kitchen door. Hygienic! Luckily, it's away from our fence.

They have 100 foot long garden so why bury it by the house, I have no clue.

Mind you, the previous tenant buried an elderly Great Dane somewhere in that garden. She wasn't a weirdo though, so it wouldn't have been close by the back door...

One of my dogs is buried a good 5 foot down, and at the bottom of the garden by the field. It is river sand, here so very, very easy to dig. I dug my dog's grave myself, years ago, so why a grown man was incapable of putting it more than a foot under, when a mere woman managed to dig an extremely deep grave.... no clue.

Sarah715 Tue 23-Feb-16 18:27:47

Oh Christ on a bike. That's just horrific. Poor, poor creature sad

I am very glad you spoke to someone who understood and believed you.

It sounds like they are thinking of getting another dog though. What the fuck can anyone do about it?

EasyToEatTiger Tue 23-Feb-16 19:31:12

I am so sorry you feel let down by the charities that are supposed to help. You have done everything you were able to do, and it sucks that you are feeling let down. I have been wholeheartedley let down by NSPCC, and I'm sure it happens a lot. However, without these charities doing what they are able to do, what kind of society would we live in? I think that even when they let us down, they are still able to provide others in need. Our garden is a cemeterygrin

Claraoswald36 Tue 23-Feb-16 20:47:43

What a brutal experience. Hope you are ok op. You did all you could x

JoffreyBaratheon Tue 23-Feb-16 21:42:51

Cheers and thanks all for putting up with my rant. I know it's pointless. It just seriously haunts me. I know I will have to get over it. But I'm scared what would happen if my beautiful young pup or my nice neighbour's elderly, vulnerable dog, got in their garden.

The crazy burial, my son saw that too. Luckily he is quite thick skinned but another child might have been scarred by the experience!

Totally nothing else I can do I just wanted to hear someone else tell me that. I appreciate every reply here. Sometimes you despair that there are decent, kind, normal people in the world when you look out of the window of your one much loved home, and see that.

My first response was like many here, though. At least the poor dog is out of it. Now to hope they don't go straight out and get their 'Japanese [sic] Akita' or husky.

If anyone, anywhere, reads this and recognises these people - shame on you for not dealing with them years ago, as I don't see how anyone close to them couldn't be aware how cruel and vile they are.

honeyroar Tue 23-Feb-16 21:54:05

Poor you, and poor doggy. Personally I would go round and tell them I know what they're like and if they get another dog you will be watching like a hawk and ready with a video camera at all times. Tell them you'll have the RSPCA on speed dial and will post videos of any abuse on local Facwbook pages, making sure it was clear who they were. They may be a rough family, but God help me I would give it them back if I'd witnessed someone abusing a sick animal (or a well one). I know that's probably stupid advice, but I would be so batshit angry at them.

MsAdorabelleDearheartVonLipwig Tue 23-Feb-16 22:01:52

Joffrey I remember your post. I remember reading it at the time and looking at my beautiful black lab and nearly crying.

I'm so sorry you've had to witness all this. There are some bastards about. I just hope that karma comes and kicks their arses.


JoffreyBaratheon Tue 23-Feb-16 22:43:19

honey I was rather brutally honest to the RSPCA Inspector. I said to her well if they get another dog and I do manage to film it, I will happily send the film to you and the coppers. But only after it has gone on YouTube. And I won't be blanking out their faces.

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