The gory details of how nine sled dogs suffered prolonged deaths when a B.C. man personally culled a pack near Whistler are being recounted as a judge considers what sentence to impose.

Robert Fawcett sat stone-faced in B.C. Supreme Court while a Crown lawyer outlined graphic details of the April 2010 slaughter, prompting loud gasps and sobbing from women in the gallery.

The former general manager of Howling Dog Tours pleaded guilty in August to one count of causing unnecessary pain and suffering to the animals, and lawyers are now making sentencing proposals.

Court has also heard Fawcett was sent an email by the company owner directing he drastically limit spending on the pack during a post-Olympic slump, and that those who worked with him believed he cared for the animals like pets and had never been seen to cause suffering to them before.

Several protesters accompanied by their small dogs stood outside court for the culmination of the case that sparked international outcry and prompted B.C. to pass some of the toughest animal cruelty laws in the country.

The maximum sentence under the Criminal Code for causing unnecessary pain and suffering to an animal is five years of prison time and up to $75,000 in fines.