Pair who used shock collar to stop dog barking wept as Blackpool court ruled they could keep her

File image of an electric shock collar like the one used to stop Milly from barking
File image of an electric shock collar like the one used to stop Milly from barking

A woman who used an electric shock collar to stop her dog barking told Blackpool magistrates: "I tried it myself and it was quite painful."

Jane McTaggart, 60, asked her daughter Kayleigh to order the device online after getting complaints over the noise their Lhasa Apso dog Milly was making.

READ MORE: From the courts
The pair were fined for causing the pet to suffer but wept in the dock and thanked magistrates after they rejected an application to take the dog away from them.

The court heard the mother did not monitor what harm the collar, which could soon be banned in England under new legislation yet to go before Parliament, was doing to Milly. The devices are already banned in Scotland and Wales.

The suffering was only discovered when the dog went missing from the family home, on Osborne Road, South Shore.

She was later found and taken to a vet who discovered the electric device underneath a regular collar and informed the RSPCA. They also found the two prongs used to administer the shocks had broken through Milly's skin.

Kayleigh McTaggart, 29, denied causing suffering but was found guilty after a trial. Her mother admitted the offence.

They younger woman was fined £60 and must pay £230 costs, while her mother was fined £40 and told to pay £130 costs.

The couple had been told that the court accepted they did love dogs and had made a one off mistake over a four week period during a busy time in their lives because Kayleigh had just had a baby.

They had two other dogs which were well kept.

Kayleigh McTaggart told the hearing they had been living on Eaves Street, in North Shore, and a neighbour had repeatedly complained over the noise of Milly's barking.

"We feared he would report us to the council.”

Her mother heard about shock collars on a TV programme called The Dog Whisperer.

She told the court: "I asked my daughter to buy one on line as I thought it would cure the problem.

“There is a remote control which emits a noise and if it does not stop barking the dog gets an electric shock.

“Before I fitted it on Milly, I tried it on myself first and it was quite painful.

“I do accept I failed in my duty of care to Milly."

An application for Milly to be taken from the pair was rejected by the court, as was an application to disqualify them from owning dogs.