A 41-year-old Inverkeithing man wanted his dog back after giving it away to be re-homed.

When this was refused, Christopher Copeland sent a message to the new owner saying: “I will cut you slowly. I do like an axe.”

Copeland, now of Rutherglen, was living in temporary accommodation at Spittalfield Crescent, Inverkeithing, when the incident occurred.

He has now appeared for sentencing at Dunfermline Sheriff Court.

He admitted that on May 17, he sent messages making threats of violence to a man involving a reference to an axe.

Depute fiscal Azrah Yousaf said Copeland had given the dog to the man to find a new home because his own accommodation difficulties.

He later demanded that the dog was returned to him but this was refused.

Defence solicitor Aime Allan said her client was concerned about the dog’s welfare and had contacted the Scottish SPCA. He had seen a photo and the dog seemed to have lost a lot of weight.

She added, “He has a complex mental health history but is now back on his medication.”

Sheriff Francis Gill fined Copeland £320.