Animal Welfare at Crisis Point

Earlier this month, the RSPCA published a news item highlighting that “animal cruelty, neglect and suffering are reaching unprecedented levels in modern times.”

The RSPCA’s chief executive warned that animal charities are overwhelmed with animals in dire need at a time when public generosity is under incredible pressure.

The figures quoted by the RSPCA are staggering, for example:

  • a 65% increase in the animals abandoned over the last five years as owners struggle to make ends meet since the recession began;
  • compared to 2010, nearly 4,000 fewer dogs and over 6,000 fewer cats were adopted in 2011 (and the situation has worsened in 2012);
  • cats and dogs are now taking nearly 10% longer to rehabilitate and rehome compared to a year ago;
  • responding to over 25,000 calls a week from the public; and
  • a predicted 6,000 more dogs and cats will be abandoned between now and the end of the year.

To quote the charity’s chief executive:

“The recession may be over but these are very dark times for its silent victims, the animals. They have never needed our help so desperately.”

And:

“This is a real crisis and despite the immense dedication of our staff and volunteers, we are struggling to cope. We really need our country’s animal lovers to step forward and open their hearts, homes and purses in these extremely difficult times.”

The RSPCA’s news follows last month’s Kent News report that the Cats Protection in Kent “has been swamped with so many unwanted cats it has been forced to close its doors to any more animals in need of a new home.” (I covered the report in my blog Too Many Unwanted Cats.)

David M. Davison

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