Almost 4,500 investigations into animal cruelty were carried out by the RSPCA in the last year across South Yorkshire – the fourth worst in the country.
The charity’s animal cruelty statistics today reveal that more than 66 per cent of complaints it investigated in South Yorkshire in 2015 related to dogs.
Nearly 23 per cent of cases related to cats – the second most abused pet.
There were 2,982 investigations into cruelty to dogs – compared to 1,004 to cats.
There were also 480 investigations into the mistreatment of other animals – but only 26 convictions were made because it is often difficult to trace those responsible.
Overall, South Yorkshire had the fourth worst figures in England and Wales.
The RSPCA today highlighted the case of Dee Dee the cockerpoo, found cowering under a car on Bradberry Balk Lane, Wombwell, Barnsley, by a passer-by in February last year.
Her hair was matted and she had a large open wound on her neck.
The local dog warden was called out but contacted the RSPCA when he saw her.
RSPCA inspector Keira Benham said: “I met the dog warden at the vets and was shocked by what I saw. We deal with some awful cases in this job but the state of this poor girl really upset me.
“Dee Dee, as she was called by staff, was badly matted with a very nasty open wound on her neck, which was obviously causing her pain, possibly as a result of a tether.
“Despite all this though she was still really friendly.
“She underwent surgery the following day, and looked like a completely different dog after being clipped and the wound stitched up.
“I fostered her for a short time to make sure she got plenty of TLC but it wasn’t long before she had captured the heart of a fantastic new owner, where she is really loving life.
“Sadly, despite conducting local enquiries and a media appeal for information, we never found out who had allowed her to get into such a terrible condition.”
Dee Dee – now called Pixie – has been given a second chance at life and now lives in Sheffield with new owner Deborah Bramhall.
She said: “Pixie is a lovely dog, she likes to sit on your lap and have cuddles like a baby. I am so pleased Pixie is now mine.”