RSPCA launches urgent adoption appeal as animal rehoming centres hit 'breaking point’

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The RSPCA is urging the public to consider adopting a pet instead of buying - as with its rescue centres full, the number of animals in private boarding has soared, costing the charity in the region of £500,000 a month.

The charity, which is celebrating its 200th anniversary this year, says the cost of living crisis has left rescue centres facing an ‘animal welfare crisis’ as animals are coming into its care faster than they are being adopted.

Currently, more than 1,400 animals are waiting in private boarding centres because RSPCA centres are full.

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In the first four months of this year, it cost the RSPCA £2.1 million to provide care for hundreds of animals in private boarding centres because its centres are already at capacity.

The RSPCA has launched an appeal for families looking for a pet to adopt instead of buy.The RSPCA has launched an appeal for families looking for a pet to adopt instead of buy.
The RSPCA has launched an appeal for families looking for a pet to adopt instead of buy.

Of that total, almost £1.2 million went into kennelling hundreds of dogs because there wasn’t any space left in any of the RSPCA’s dedicated centres and branches.

The animal welfare charity is also having to rely on private boarding to look after animals in need, which comes at a huge cost.

The RSPCA currently has 1,441 animals in private boarding, costing in the region of £500,000 a month - or approximately £125,000 per week.

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That includes 503 dogs, 126 rabbits, 201 cats, 285 horses, 58 exotic animals and 126 farm animals.

Karen Colman, Head of Animal Logistics and Welfare Oversight at the RSPCA, said: “As we celebrate our 200th birthday this year, it’s incredible to see how far animal welfare has come since our founding in 1824. But the sad reality is that there’s still so much to do, and we’re currently facing an animal welfare crisis.

"Our rescue and rehoming centres are at breaking point with the number of animals coming in versus the number being rehomed.

“We’re launching an urgent appeal to those families who do feel they commit to the cost and responsibility of a pet to please consider adopting a rescue instead of buying from a breeder or a pet shop. We have hundreds of animals in our care with so much love to give, they just need a chance.”

To find out more about the animals in need of a forever home at the RSPCA Leeds and Wakefield branch, visit: https://www.rspcaleedsandwakefield.org.uk/adoptionprocess/

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