A man and woman have been banned from keeping dogs for ten years and hit with a fine after causing unnecessary suffering to their pet lurcher. 

Levi Douglas Swift, 21, and Bethany Nicole Greener, 35, both from Hartlepool, pleaded guilty on March 26, 2024, at Teesside Magistrates' Court to the charges against them.

The charges brought by the RSPCA related to a period between October 20 and December 1, 2023, when they failed to provide adequate nutrition for their brindle Lurcher, Elsie.

Along with an £80 fine each, Swift and Greener were ordered to pay a surcharge to fund victim services of £32 and costs of £225.

Swift's total sum to be recovered is £337, while Greener's is £257, with the court ordering deductions from their benefits to cover the amount.

In addition to financial penalties, the court deprived Swift and Greener of ownership of Elsie and ordered the RSPCA to arrange for her seizure after the damage the pair had caused.

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Both were banned from owning, keeping, or having any control over animals for ten years.

The defendants' guilty pleas were taken into account when sentencing.

Witness expenses of £144 were to be paid to the RSPCA from central funds.

Swift, of Cornwall Street, Hartlepool and Greener, of Hutton Avenue, Hartlepool, have until April 16, 2024, to pay their total balances.