RSPCA prepares for ‘toughest Christmas yet’ amid fears of pet neglect

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA - Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA has said it is preparing for its “toughest Christmas yet”, with fears the financial strain from the Coronavirus pandemic could lead to a rise in pets being abandoned or neglected.

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA - Credit: RSPCA

Last December, the charity took in over 7,000 homeless animals, with 451 incidents in Norfolk and 281 incidents in Suffolk and now it fears that number will rise as people struggle to afford to care for their pets.

Across the winter period, from December to February, the charity was called out to 1,268 incidents in Norfolk and 855 incidents in Suffolk.

Dermot Murphy, head of the RSPCA’s animal rescue teams, said: “Christmas may be different for many people this year but for the RSPCA, our teams will be working day in, day out, as usual, rescuing, caring and rehabilitating those animals who need us the most.

“Last year, we rescued thousands of animals over the winter months and we fear that due to the pandemic, we could be facing our toughest Christmas yet as we are braced for a rise in abandoned and neglected animals needing our help.”

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA - Credit: RSPCA


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Mr Murphy said the year had been a tough one for the charity as well as owners, with the pandemic putting added pressure on its frontline teams who work 365 days a year including Christmas day, adding that the RSPCA was urgently seeking donations.

He added: “It’s been a tough year for everyone, including charities, so now more than ever we need your help to continue our vital work saving animals and giving them a voice.

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“Our frontline teams are out throughout the winter but they cannot do this alone, which is why the RSPCA has launched its Join the Christmas Rescue campaign to show how we can all help animals.

“From our animal rescuers, hospital and centre staff, and our volunteers to every supporter who picks up the phone to call us when an animal is in need, or donates to help us continue our work - every one of us is vital to make sure we can rescue the animals who need us the most.”

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA

The RSPCA is preparing for a busy winter period. Photo: RSPCA - Credit: RSPCA

Those wishing to donate to the charity can do so here.

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