Ruby and Benji starved to death died in heartbreaking embrace

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A 21-year-old woman from South Wales left her two dogs, Ruby and Benji in a feces covered room; the bonded pair starved to death and died in a heartbreaking embrace. Two-year-old Benji was found facing Ruby with his front leg over her body.

On Friday, Lavington resident, Kimberly Thi-My Atwell appeared in Albury Local Court and was convicted of two counts of aggravated animal cruelty for causing the deaths of the two dogs. Magistrate Brender sentenced Atwell to 80 hours of community service, banned her from owning any animals for the next five years and fined her $144. 

According to the social media page of the RSPCA NSW, Atwell abandoned Ruby and Benji in the filthy laundry room for two weeks in August 2017 with no food or water.

“The laundry was found with a strong pungent smell of dog faeces and urine, dog faeces all over the floor and an empty ice-cream container. The Staffy Benji was found lying facing the 6-month-old Kelpie puppy Ruby, with his front leg over her body.

The inspector touched Benji as he thought he may have still been alive, but he was also dead in rigor. Both dogs were extremely emaciated and no water or food was found in the laundry.

The dogs’ bodies were seized for a post mortem conducted by a veterinarian which showed that both Ruby and Benji were severely emaciated at the time of their deaths. Both had a body score of 1 out of 9 (with 9 being a healthy dog), and both had died from a combination of dehydration and starvation.”

The RSPCA NSW Deputy Chief Inspector Scott Meyers hopes to remind people to report cases of suspected animal cruelty and neglect. It is beyond comprehension the pain and fear Benji and Ruby must have gone through for the two weeks they were left alone with no food or water.

“Our job never gets easier, seeing horrific stuff like this. I can’t even imagine the pain and suffering these poor dogs went through over an extended period of time and in their last hours.”

If you have any information about animal cruelty, please make a confidential report by calling 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 3589) or online at

Rest in peace Benji and Ruby. When will animal cruelty punishments reflect the severity of the crimes?

Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook for the latest animal related news.

An incredible transformation

13 replies
  1. Alisa clark says:

    This is so sad. Rip sweet babies I’m so sorry ya’s lives didn’t matter. I hope she gets her just cause. I hope she is never allowed to own another animal for the rest of her life

  2. pennysdachshunds says:

    So Called “MAGASTRATE!!!!”Brender IS AS BIG of An “NONVESTED, CRUEL, IGORANT ASSHOLE” as the Bitch that STARVED These poor Animal’s in Such a Ruthless Manor!!! For the DOWNRIGHT PATHETIC SENTENCE for the HORRENDOUS & PAINFUL LOSS OF LIFE!!

  3. Jo says:

    The penalties and punishment need to be severe for all cruelty to our furry babies. I sometimes think thst depending on the severity comes the most severe punishment. Thudbdeserves the death penalty but first some similar punishment eg, mo food or water for two weeks then death by whatever means at hand—perhaps hanging! I’m so sick of reading about the cruelty done to the babies I want to make the ones responsible to suffer the wsy they made them to suffer than die do they cannot repeat their offenses! Disgusting people!!

  4. Adrienne says:

    This scum of a creature should have also been put in jail for a period of time for allowing these 2 dogs to die the way they did. Maybe this woman should be left in a room the way she did to these dogs and see how long she can survive. Cruel, vile monster that does not deserve the light sentence she got. She should have gotten what she did to these two sweet dogs.

  5. Jan Barnes says:

    These tragedies will recur until the punishments fit the crime! It is a serious crime in and of itself that the magistrates in Wales obviously have no regard for the value of their precious animals! In fact, each “slap on the wrist” ruling is a serious crime!

  6. JEANETTE says:

    that is all the judge gave this evil idiot., those poor dogs deserved for her to never have another animal. the judge is also an idiot.

  7. Kathy Mora says:

    A fine of $144…community service? That’s not justiceQ Starve the bitch for 2 weeks like she did the dogs. That would be justice! How the FUCK do they expect this kind of behavior to be eradicated when the punishment does not fit the crime? Broken justice, NO JUSTICE!

  8. mike says:

    $150 dollar fine and 80 hours of community service and 5 years not owning another animal is NOT even close to the punishment that should be handed down. NOT EVEN CLOSE TO ENOUGH PUNISHMENT for this kind of torture! A $1500. dollar fine, 80 days in jail and never to own a animal again would be a little closer to justice.

  9. Dalma Bugg says:

    I’m wondering how much more severe a heinous crime ofvqnimsl torture could possibly be for any of the lawmakers and law enforcers to actually do more than this rubbish slap on the wrist penalties. This perpetrator won’t be forced to even turn up for communitiy service, will cry poor to get out of the fine and will have more animals within a year, I could almost guarantee it. Doesn’t matter where in the world is unfortunate enough to have hosted their birth, the same slap on the wrist is issued. Just a crying shame it’s the animals, always and only the animals who suffer, never the humans. H lol, we were made to take care of them, not rape, torture and kill them. RIP precious Ruby and Benji, run free and happy OTRB.

  10. Bunny Peters says:

    Beyond outrageous: both the cruelty of the cunt who neglected these treasures AND the magistrate who failed to give her an appropriate punishment.

    Hopefully they will both burn in Hell forever for their cruelty…….


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