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 https://
Rest in peace Benji and Ruby. When will animal cruelty punishments reflect the severity of the crimes?
An incredible transformation