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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

Unprecedented surge in dog abandonment and neglect cases alerts reported by USPCA

The Boxer dog after being rescued.

The Boxer dog after being rescued.

The USPCA (Ulster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) has responded to reports of a dog found weighted down in water in the Moy area over the weekend.

They commented that this is the latest in a series of distressing cases recently, and that they are witnessing an unprecedented surge in cases of dog abandonment and neglect.

The charity is reporting a 72% increase in the number of stray and abandoned dogs coming into their Centre compared to this time last year.

The Boxer dog after being rescued.

Many of these dogs show obvious signs of neglect, including malnourishment, and untreated medical conditions, indicating prolonged suffering and hardship.

Siobhan McHaffie, Director of Operations and Development at the USPCA states:

“The rise in abandonment and neglect of dogs is hugely concerning, and the levels of neglect we are seeing in unwanted dogs coming into our care is unprecedented. We have seen the number of stray dogs brought into our care almost double compared to last year, with last month seeing the highest number of strays ever brought into our Centre.

“In the past week alone, our team have dealt with two serious and distressing cases of neglect in abandoned dogs. Both dogs are now getting the vet treatment, care and attention they deserve. One of the cases is now being investigated by the PSNI and Council Animal Welfare team. It involves a severely malnourished boxer dog which came to us after being physically thrown out of a moving car close to Newry.

“We would urge members of the public to help by reporting cases of dog abandonment and neglect to their local council. Cases of cruelty should be reported to the PSNI.

“In extreme cases of cruelty and neglect you can also notify the USPCA, and we in turn can follow up with the relevant authorities.”

The Boxer now in the care of the USPCA team.

The Boxer now in the care of the USPCA team.

The USPCA state that the factors contributing to this distressing trend are complex, ranging from economic hardship and housing instability to lack of awareness about responsible pet ownership.

The strain on resources within communities and limited access to affordable veterinary care further exacerbate the challenges faced by pet owners, often leading to difficult decisions and unfortunate outcomes for innocent animals. However, they conclude that in some of the most recent cases coming into the Centre, there can be no justification for the state of neglect seen in these animals.


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