Christchurch man fined for using forceps and scissors to dock tails of two day old puppies

A Christchurch man who docked the tails of six Jack Russell cross puppies has been fined in court today.

Jack Russell cross puppies with tails docked. Source: Supplied

Carlo De Regla was sentenced in the Christchurch District Court and ordered to pay a fine of $900 to SPCA, $150 towards legal costs and $130 in court costs.

SPCA says it was notified in May this year about a Trade Me listing advertising six Jack Russell cross puppies for sale, all with tails that appeared to be docked.

In a statement released today, SPCA said inspectors visited the property of Carlo De Regla, and saw that all six puppies had shortened tails, some with tails longer than others.

"The puppies were seized and a vet concluded that the puppies had tails that were amputated near the base.

"In October 2018, new animal welfare regulations came into effect banning tail docking, unless performed by a vet or student vet under supervision," the statement reads.

"When interviewed, the defendant admitted he docked the tails when the puppies were two-days-old, and that he had used forceps and scissors.

"He said he hadn’t given the puppies any pain relief at the time of the procedure, because he didn’t think the puppies experienced any pain."

De Regla says he docked the tails as he believes short tails "look beautiful". He also admitted to performing the procedure on other animals overseas.

“Tail docking is a surgical procedure that should only be carried out if a dog’s tail is damaged in some way, and the dog must be provided pain relief. While tail docking regulations came into effect almost two years ago, SPCA is concerned to see that people are still carrying out this illegal practice,” SPCA CEO Andrea Midgen says.