THE RSPCA has received more than 1,600 reports of abandoned animals across England and Wales since lockdown began with 28 reports in Worcestershire alone.
Charity chiefs have released the figures as part of its emergency appeal, launched to keep its rescue teams out on the road during the Coronavirus crisis and continuing to rescue animals most in need.
In Worcestershire, there have been reports about 28 abandoned animals to the charity’s cruelty hotline since lockdown started on March 23.
Animal rescuers have been designated key workers by the Government but vital funding is needed to help the RSPCA’s frontline staff continue this crucial work across England and Wales.
Dermot Murphy, head of the RSPCA rescue teams, said: “Although much of the country is on lockdown, sadly there are still thousands of animals who need our help, including abandoned pets.
“Many people are finding their pets are a real source of comfort in these anxious times and thankfully cases of abandonment are slightly lower than usual but it’s heart-breaking some animals are being dumped during this crisis.
“In most cases we don’t know why pets are abandoned but it’s really important to remind people there is no evidence to suggest that Covid-19 can be passed from pets to people.
“There is lots of help and support out there for anyone else struggling to get animal food, with health or behavioural issues, exercising their pets or managing to keep children safe around pets. Please don’t be afraid to ask for help.”
Since the Government introduced the lockdown measures, the RSPCA has responded to more than 27,000 incidents, with 1,600 incidents of abandoned animals reported. The number of animals being cared for by the RSPCA at centres, hospitals and vet surgeries has also grown by hundreds.
Since lockdown began the charity has dealt with 27,507 incidents of animal cruelty, neglect and suffering animals which need help; received more than 92,800 calls from members of the public and have more than
4,300 animals in RSPCA care.
Visit www.rspca.org.uk/covid to help the RSPCA keep rescuing animals like these and keep their animal hospitals and centres running for emergency treatment and round the clock care through these unprecedented times.