Two Pembrokeshire women have been handed suspended prison sentences after they left a dog to starve to death.

Deborah-Marie May, 25, of no fixed abode and Victoria Louise Reynolds, 29, of Martletwy, Narberth, both pleaded guilty to one offence under the Animal Welfare Act that between 22 October 2017 and 22 December 2017 at Larch Road, Milford Haven.

They caused unnecessary suffering to a dog named Lenny by failing to exercise reasonable care and supervision in respect of his protection which led to his death.

The lurcher cross type dog was found starved to death in a bedroom. Following an examination, the dog was found to just weigh just 9.2 kilos, when he should have weighed around 25 kilos.

May and Reynolds appeared on separate occasions at Haverfordwest Magistrates’ Court, with magistrates indicating it was one of the “worst cases of animal cruelty they had ever seen”.

RSPCA inspector Nic de Celis said: “This case is certainly a disturbing and very upsetting one.

“When I arrived the dog was decomposing. It is just awful to think what Lenny went through, suffering for a long period of time, before tragically he died of hunger.

“There is no excuse for this, owning a dog is a privilege and to just abandon him without any thought is truly horrifying I can't understand how they let Lenny wither away and then left the body to rot in the back room.”

On 9 April, May was handed a sentence of 22 weeks imprisonment suspended for 18 months, a 10-day Rehabilitation Activity Requirement, 150 hours unpaid work, costs of £300, ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £115 and was banned from keeping any animal for five years.

On Monday 16 April, Reynolds was sentenced to 26 weeks imprisonment suspended for two years, ordered to pay costs of £300, a victim surcharge of £115 and was banned from keeping all animals for 10 years.