Singapore — A 28-year-old Indonesian domestic helper was charged in court on Wednesday (June 10) with throwing her employers’ pet poodle off the third floor of their home in Sunrise Walk, Yio Chu Kang, last month.
The dog, Dou Dou, sustained injuries so serious it had to be put to sleep.
The helper has been charged with animal cruelty under the Animals and Birds Act. She can be jailed for up to 18 months or fined up to S$15,000, or both.
According to Chinese daily Liane Zaobao, the owners of the dog are a couple from Hong Kong named Mr Xu and Ms Sha. They are reportedly devastated by the loss of their beloved pet, whom they had taken care of for 11 years, even when they lived in South Korea for several years, and through their move to Singapore in 2019.
The domestic helper, identified as Giyanti Wulandari, started working for the family in December 2019.
The incident occurred at around 9 am on May 13.
Mr Xu told Lianhe Zaobao: “I was in the study working and my wife was resting in the room. Suddenly, the maid ran in, saying that (the dog) was lying on the front porch motionless. We went to check and found it bleeding from its mouth.”
The couple immediately took the poodle to a vet and discovered that it had sustained internal injuries and several fractures, which could have come from a beating, a vehicular accident, or a fall from height.
As the poodle was very badly injured, the couple decided to put it down.
Lianhe Zaobao quoted Ms Sha as saying: “We did not want to give up. We kept begging the vet to save the dog. But the vet said that even if it survives, it would likely be paralysed for the rest of its life.”
The couple, who had an inkling that the helper was responsible for the incident, then grew concerned for their other dog, as well as their two young sons.
Mr Xu said: “We suspected the maid then, but she denied it, so there was nothing we could do.”
However, an argument ensued between the couple and the helper four days later, when she refused to take care of the two sons. The couple called the police because of the argument.
In the course of the police investigation, the reason for the poodle’s injuries was discovered. The maid admitted that she had thrown the dog off the balcony of the third floor of the couple’s home.
Mr Xu said: “Luckily, we found a chance to call the police. They found conclusive evidence in her phone.”
The helper will be back in court on July 1. /TISG