A vile pet owner who was caught on video repeatedly punching his dog over the head has been banned from keeping animals for four years – but spared jail.
John Bunting, 24, was filmed by a neighbour in September last year hitting his terrified crossbreed, Disco, more than 20 times at his home in Preston, Lancashire.
In the shocking footage, Disco can be heard crying out in terror as he’s punched in the face and head while grabbed by the scruff of the neck.
Bunting later grabs the helpless canine and puts him in a shed before arming himself with a long piece of plastic and using it as a weapon to hit the dog.
John Bunting (right), 24, was filmed by a neighbour hitting his terrified crossbreed, Disco (left in RSPCA care), more than 20 times at his home in Preston, Lancashire
Bunting (pictured hitting his dog) pleaded guilty to one offence of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal at Blackpool Magistrates’ Court on Monday
The incident was reported to the RSPCA and investigators attended the address on September 8 last year and seized Disco before arresting Bunting.
Appearing at Blackpool Magistrates’ Court on Monday he pleaded guilty to one offence of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.
Bunting was disqualified from keeping animals for four years but spared jail.
The court heard he lost his temper with Disco because he wouldn’t go to the toilet outside.
RSPCA inspector Alison Fletcher said: ‘I met Disco before I saw the footage, which is distressing to watch.
‘He was brought into the room by a male vet and he was extremely frightened.
‘He had no obvious injuries but it was impossible to touch him without causing him distress.’
Ms Fletcher recalled the difficulty she had in transporting Disco away from the house, having to reassure him for around 20 minutes.
Bunting also put the helpless canine in a shed before arming himself with a long piece of plastic and using it as a weapon to hit the dog
She continued: ‘When I attempted to pick him up to place him in the kennel at the rear of my van and take him to the animal centre he went into blind panic.
‘I did eventually manage to coax him inside after around 20 minutes of sitting with him and calmly reassuring him.’
Disco is now being cared for by professionals at RSPCA Southport, Ormskirk and District Branch Animal Centre.
Inspector Fletcher said: ‘This poor dog was in turmoil, caused to suffer physically and mentally.
‘It has taken a great deal of love, patience and training from the wonderful staff caring for him but I saw him today and he’s like a different dog.
‘I’m very happy to say that he’ll be looking for a new home soon.’
As well as being disqualified from keeping animals Bunting was was given an 18-month community order and ordered to do unpaid work.