Sheep cruelty man 'indifferent' to flock

SELF-employed David Tallowin is awaiting sentence after four of his sheep were found in a shocking state, wasting away in a Suffolk field.Tallowin, 36, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the animals between February and March this year by failing to give them proper care.

By Amanda Cresswell

SELF-employed David Tallowin is awaiting sentence after four of his sheep were found in a shocking state, wasting away in a Suffolk field.

Tallowin, 36, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to the animals between February and March this year by failing to give them proper care. He also admitted to a further charge of failing to dispose of a sheep carcass as required.

The sheep were kept in a field at Tallowin's address at Blue Barn Farm, Otley, which had limited grazing, said Hugh Rowland, prosecuting on behalf of the RSPCA.


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One of the four sheep was unsteady on its feet and a fifth was found dead in a stable in the paddock, South East Suffolk Magistrates sitting in Ipswich were told.

"Its eyes were missing and there was a strong smell of decomposing flesh," said Mr Rowland.

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A vet who examined the sheep described three of the four as being "severely emaciated" and the remainder in an "extremely poor condition" although all have now recovered.

The court heard the sheep were signed over to the RSPCA. But although they have now all put on weight, when they arrived in the hands of the new carer the animals were described as "weak, underweight and little more than skin and bone."

Mr Rowland told the court Tallowin, who doesn't own sheep for a living, had caused unnecessary suffering to the animals in his care by failing to provide adequate food for one month.

Graham Skippen, mitigating, said Tallowin, who had the sheep three years, wasn't experienced in looking after them and thought that they had looked fine.

The court heard Tallowin had been giving the animals carrots and hay. "At Christmas time he went without food himself to feed the sheep," said Mr Skippen.

Mr Skippen said the dead sheep was disposed of by Tallowin, although not immediately. It was thought that somehow its throat had been cut, or it had cut itself on barbed wire.

Bench chairman Peter Page ordered reports before sentencing on the afternoon of August 19.

He said the aggravating features were prolonged neglect of the animals, that there were several animals involved and that Tallowin was indifferent to the plight of the sheep.

Weblink: www.rspca.org.uk

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