A FARMER who kept pigs up to their bellies in slurry and burned a dead piglet in a bathtub has been fined £12,000.
Adrian Alexander, of Carmarthenshire, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to 27 animals, including piglets and sows, and not meeting their needs, at Llanelli Magistrates’ Court.
Magistrates heard that Alexander, of The Old Stable Yard, Heol Troeon Bach, Tycroes, did not provide enough food, water and dry bedding for the pigs despite being advised by Carmarthenshire Council’s animal health officers on a number of occasions.
Most of the pigs were underweight. One of the sows assessed by a vet had a bodyweight score whose characteristics included prominent hips and backbone and no fat cover.
Others were found shivering, covered in muck and having difficulty moving around.
Although some improvements had been made following council officers’ advice it wasn’t enough to end the pigs’ suffering, resulting in their seizure.
Alexander also admitted two other breaches, one of which concerned the burning of a dead piglet in a disused bath tub.
As well as the fine, the 51-year-old was disqualified from keeping pigs for three years and given an 18-month community order.
Alexander must also carry out 180 hours of unpaid work.
The prosecution was led by Carmarthenshire Council.
The council’s executive board member responsible for animal health welfare, councillor Philip Hughes, said: “This was a shocking case of neglect, with the owner not even providing his animals with their very basic needs – food, water and dry bedding – and the living conditions were totally unacceptable.
“He was warned on a number of occasions and whilst some improvements were carried out, it was not enough and the pigs were seized. Had they not been removed from the farm then the suffering would have continued.”