A woman has been banned from keeping animals for ten years in England, after her 10 dogs were found caged in her living room under horrifying conditions. The animals were subjected to dog-fighting, and were so restricted that they were seldom allowed to exercise. Their conditions were so bad that during their rescue many of them were unable to walk on a lead. Two of them had to literally be carried out of the house.

Melanie Jayne Melville, from Hull, made her dogs fight one another to the point of injury, and did not let them outside to relieve themselves. Instead, they resorted to soiling indoors.

An investigation was launched when members of the public reported to local police that one of the dogs was found with injuries caused by dog-fighting. The animal was taken to a veterinarian, who found that the extent of the injuries were so bad that the dog had to be euthanized.

Melville pleaded guilty at Hull Magistrates Court to contravening offenses under the Animal Welfare Act and failing to protect the dogs from pain, suffering and injury. Overwhelming evidence was found against Melville when the vet who examined the animals stated that, all but two of them had scars consistent with fighting one another.

She was handed a 10-year ban on keeping animals, and the Magistrate ordered her to pay a £350 fine ($457) and an £85 ($111) victim surcharge. She has been ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work as well as partake in a 15-day rehabilitation activity.

The nine dogs, who were removed from Melville’s house, have improved since going into proper care. It was reported that their behavior is normal and they have all improved massively from nervous ill-treated dogs to happier well socialized animals.

David Barritt, chief campaigner for Network for Animals said a situation such as this is sad, cruel and difficult to grasp.

“The sheer abuse that these helpless animals endured is heart-wrenching. We feel that punishment is a slap on the wrist compared to what she subjected those dogs too. We call on authorities in England to review the animal cruelty legislation to ensure that an offender’s punishment fits their crime.“