Neglected dog’s overgrown claws ‘worst ever seen’ by RSPCA inspector

Bentley's overgrown claws

When six-year-old Staffie Bentley came into the care of the RSPCA, his claws were so overgrown that they had become painfully embedded in his pads – the worst such case one RSPCA inspector had seen in the past 20 years.

Bentley was also suffering from a bilateral ear infection and a chronic skin disease which had caused extensive fur loss and scabs from head to toe.

“I was immediately struck by how thin he was and that he had an extensive skin condition and fur loss. I could also see that his claws were overgrown,” said RSPCA inspector Vicki McDonald.

“Ultimately Bentley had endured suffering unnecessarily”

“Bentley’s skin was very red, smelly, crusty and thickened and there were sores present with extensive fur loss. His ears appeared infected. His claws were significantly overgrown with several so long they had pierced the pads and become embedded and infected. They were the worst I have seen on a dog in my 20-year career.

“His skin condition had caused what fur he had to contain head to toe scab-like patches giving him the appearance of being mottled. Ian Podmore stated he had owned the dog for about 18 months to two years and that he was not on any veterinary treatment. He showed me some over the counter dog shampoo he said he had tried using but it had not resolved the problem.”

the overgrown claws

Bentley was discovered by the RSPCA in a property in Blackburn on September 21 last year. His former owner has since been given a given an eight-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, and was banned from keeping dogs for ten years.

A vet from Greater Manchester Animal Hospital gave evidence to the court. She said, “Given the severity of Bentley’s condition on presentation, in my opinion he will have suffered for many days, as a minimum, likely longer. The low body weight will have taken many days or possibly weeks to have developed and would have left him experiencing weakness and debilitation.

“Ultimately Bentley had endured suffering unnecessarily. Regardless of the cause of the emaciation, ear disease, eye disease and skin disease and whether treatable or not, veterinary treatment should have been sought much earlier in this case.”

“Had he received help earlier he may well have survived”

Despite extensive treatment in the following weeks, Bentley did not recover and the vet made the decision to put him to sleep on humane grounds. Had he received appropriate treatment sooner, the vet added,his condition could have been managed.

Inspector McDonald concluded, “Bentley’s suffering was completely avoidable and unnecessary. Had he received help earlier he may well have survived. It’s imperative that people seek veterinary advice if their pet is showing signs of poor health and ask for help if they find themselves in a situation where they are not able to cope or meet their pet’s needs.”

Image by RSPCA


  1. Absolutely disgusting, how can you do this, don’t have a dog if you are going to treat it this way. Lock him up and throw away the key. See how he likes it when no one comes to his aid. Poor dog dying when he could have been saved.

  2. Call us a nation of animal lovers, ignorance a lot comes to mind. Being an animal lover myself, I can not understand the minds of these people, they should not be allowed ever from owning an animal.

  3. People like this should be banned from keeping any animals for LIFE! If I’d of been a neighbour I’d of been round there sorting him out!

  4. His name should definitely have been made public, also a very long prison sentence. What is to stop him getting another dog, doesn’t bear thinking about.

  5. Disgusting the owner should never have been allowed to walk away free. The dog couldn’t!! but hopefully it is now. In America the owner would get a lot worse

  6. Absolutely terrible,the poor dog must have been in so much pain,it makes me cry thinking about Bentley suffering as he did.He didn’t deserve being treated like that,you have a pet for life and a responsibility to care for it,that owner should have a LIFE ban from ever owning another animal,what is to stop them getting another dog and doing the same again.

  7. This person should be locked away with the bare minimum food through a hatch to barely keep him alive and no personal care provided with no access to anything to help this scum in any way shape or form personally or medically! Better still send him to me and I’ll show him how it feels to do neglected to such an extent that you lose your life! How could he even look at this poor dog knowing it was in so much pain. This beautiful creature couldn’t be saved due to his negligence! EVIL SCUM OF THE WORLD!!!

  8. The person should of been jailed for this,how could the person live knowing what that person had done,that poor dog,the he must of suffered and so should the owner,


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