England’s oldest and biggest animal welfare charity is expecting to see a huge rise in calls about abandoned pets in the coming weeks - after last summer saw an 85 per cent spike in calls on the winter months.
On average, the RSPCA reported it received a call every six minutes about a dumped animal, often found in boxes, thrown in bins or left on the side of roads, throughout June, July and August 2018.
Dermot Murphy, RSPCA’S chief inspectorate officer, said: “Sadly, we see a dramatic increase in the number of animals abandoned in the summer. From unwanted newborn kittens and puppies dumped in boxes and bins, exotic pets cast aside or horses abandoned in someone else’s field, dumped like rubbish.
“There is never an excuse to abandon an animal in this way and we would urge anyone who is struggling to cope with their pets to contact us or other charities for help. Our pets are sentient beings and great companions who rely on us for their health and happiness so dumping them like an old mobile phone or a piece of rubbish should never be the answer.
“The peak in animals being abandoned in the summer puts a massive strain on our inspectors, animal centres and branches who are left picking up the pieces when an animal is dumped.”
It is not clear why the figures rise so dramatically in the warmer months but it may be that abandoned animals are more visible when people are out and about, that people feel less guilty about leaving them alone when the weather is warmer, or even that some people dump their pets when they go away on holiday and have nowhere for them to go.
It costs the RSPCA nearly £30,000 to run an animal centre, providing vet care, food, toys and comfort to needy animals, every month. To help the RSPCA continue to rescue animals, visit www.rspca.org.uk/summercrisis