Dog killer jailed (WARNING: Graphic content)

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A WOMAN who killed her pet dog and buried the body in the garden has been jailed.

Hayley Jayne Cowan, 22, wrapped duct tape around Staffordshire Bull Terrier Beau’s muzzle and then strangled her with a collar and lead before burying her in a shallow grave in a garden.

The RSCPA's photo of how Beau was found

The RSCPA's photo of how Beau was found

Beau had been taken away from Cowan by friends on October 14 last year after they saw her kick the dog in the face twice at a house on Lynton Road, Tyldesley.

But they later returned the dog after Cowan promised not to hurt her again.

Cowan, of Sale Lane, Tyldesley, told her friends the next day that Beau had run off and they helped search for her but found no trace.

RSPCA inspector Vicki McDonald said: “A couple of weeks later, Cowan admitted that she had killed Beau and buried her in the garden at the incident location. The witnesses attended that night and found the freshly dug area.

An RSPCA picture of where Beau was buried

An RSPCA picture of where Beau was buried

“They confronted her the next day but were told it was just toys that had been buried. The next night they went back and discovered the body, and called us.”

The RSPCA was called on November 5 and Beau’s body was dug up. A post-mortem found Beau died of strangulation by means of the duct tape and tightened collar.

Bruising to her limbs, and internal bruising to her neck and lungs suggested she had been held down.

Insp McDonald said: “It’s difficult to imagine what this poor dog went through at the hands of someone she trusted.

An RSPCA picture of Beau before she was killed

An RSPCA picture of Beau before she was killed

“It was a heartbreaking case to investigate and mainly made possible by witnesses coming forward. It was very traumatic and upsetting for them, so I am very grateful.

“I hope the sentence passed will give Cowan the opportunity to reflect upon her actions against Beau.”

Cowan pleaded guilty to causing unnecessary suffering to Beau by kicking her in the face on October 14 and causing unnecessary suffering by asphyxiating Beau on October 15, resulting in her death.

She was sentenced to four months in jail, banned from keeping any animals for life and ordered to pay £500 in costs.