Parents jailed for making children live with 22 dogs

LONDON, July 25, 2006 (AFP) – A couple in Scotland were jailed Tuesday for making their four children live in a house filled with dog excrement and garbage.

Education officials were concerned after one of the children, aged five, eight, 12 and 13, began growling, barking and would try to squeeze into small spaces at school.

Social workers also had reports from neighbours saying they had seen one of the children hanging from an upstairs windows by her fingertips.

Arbroath Sheriff Court heard that the children were not washed or clothed properly and were forced to share their house with 22 dogs between May 1 and August 19, 2005.

The 35-year-old woman and 60-year-old man admitted to wilfully neglecting their children in a manner that was likely to cause unnecessary suffering or injury to their health.

Upon sentencing the couple to 70 days in jail, the sheriff told them they placed their children, who have since been taken into care, in the "most appalling of conditions".