A man caught on CCTV repeatedly kicking his lurcher Benji has been banned from keeping animals for five years.

Paul Cowie, 57,  of Peterlee was captured on camera kicking Benji 15 times in one minute during the horrifying attack in October last year.

The footage shows the lurcher cowering and trying to avoid Cowie’s aggressive kicks.

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A vet who assessed Benji after the incident said the dog showed no signs of aggression.

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In a written statement they said: “There is no indication as to why the man (Cowie) started kicking the dog. The dog showed no signs of aggression and was behaving normally. It is evident from the body language of the dog that it was being submissive, was scared and attempting to avoid the kicks.

“When the dog pulled on the lead in an attempt to escape the attack, the man used the lead to pull him closer. At times the force of the kicks lifted the dog off its feet, and on one occasion caused it to fall over backwards.”

The dog has since been taken into the care of the RPSCA and will soon be put up for rehoming.

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Appearing before Peterlee Magistrates Court last week (April 25) Cowie admitted causing unnecessary suffering to Benji by inflicting blunt force trauma and physical violence.

The Northern Echo: Benji has since been taken into the care of the RSPCA and will soon be rehomed.Benji has since been taken into the care of the RSPCA and will soon be rehomed. (Image: RSPCA)

In mitigation the court heard that Cowie was struggling with alcohol and was shocked when he viewed the footage and saw himself kicking his pet.

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Cowie, of Sledmere Close, Peterlee, was banned by magistrates from keeping animals for five years.

He was also sentenced to a 12 month community order and ordered to undertake 20 days’ rehab and a nine-month alcohol treatment order.

He will have to pay £450 costs and a £115 victim surcharge.