Refuge full as dumping takes toll

PRE-CHRISTMAS dumping of pets has left Maryborough Animal Refuge full to its limit, with staff having to turn away animals in need of shelter.

Refuge manager Helene Emery said so many kittens had come into the refuge before Christmas that many had to be sent to the pound or fostered by refuge volunteers.

“We just don’t have enough space here for all of them,” she said. “Some of our volunteers took cats home and are fostering them.

“So far we’ve only used our volunteers as foster carers but we’re looking for more foster carers from the public.”

Since Christmas there have been fewer abandoned animals but the refuge is still full to capacity, Ms Emery says.

“We’ve got 17 dogs and puppies, 11 cats and seven kittens here at the moment – plus the kittens in foster care.

“We have more than 20 volunteers but we always need more help, as well as donations of food and money.”

With four more weeks of school holidays, refuge staff hope pet owners will be responsible and make suitable arrangements for their animals for trips away.

According to an RSPCA survey, 55 per cent of pet owners take their animals on holiday. Unfortunately, some that are left behind are dumped at refuges.

“Animals, especially dogs, are sociable creatures and are best left with friends or at reputable kennels,” RSPCA spokesman Michael Beatty said.

“By being organised and taking the necessary precautions people can ensure their trip away is well deserved and stress-free for both themselves and their animals.”

Anyone interested in becoming a foster carer or volunteer or donating goods to the Maryborough Animal Refuge can visit the refuge on Bright Street, Maryborough, or call 4123 1712.



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