Vet’s shocking neglect of his own pets

A VET neglected the care of his own pets because he was too busy with work commitments.

Dr David Ziebell left his 11-year-old border terrier to suffer for more than a year from a serous dental illness and other animals at his farm lived in vile conditions, a court was told.

The veterinary surgeon pleaded guilty in the Southport Magistrates Court today to three counts of animal neglect.

A raid of the 51-year-old's Jimboomba property by the RSPCA in October last year found animals living in "appalling conditions" alongside 15 dead birds and a dead cow, the court was told.

A budgie was found to have no access to water.

The border terrier named Cullie was kept on a filthy veranda which was covered in faeces.

Ziebell admitted he knew she had a number of conditions, including the dental infection which the court heard caused "substantial pain", and failed to treat them.

Ziebell's lawyer said his client had been a practising vet for "many years" and had let his home life slip because he focused too much on work.

"He's a very competent and caring vet in the practice of veterinary science," the solicitor said.

"His work commitments are very heavy.

"The area where Cullie was kept was dirty and he acknowledges that, he's extremely remorseful."

The court was told the charges could have a significant consequence on his career.

Magistrate Kerrie O'Callaghan fined Ziebell $2000, ordered him to repay court costs and banned him from owning any animals for the next two years.

Ziebell asked for Cullie to be returned to him but the request was denied.

The border terrier, who had to have teeth removed, has been placed in a foster home.