Pets being abandoned when owners go on holiday.
Many people include their pets in family holidays and others will have the foresight and responsibility to book their dog into somewhere such as Holidays4Dogs – where their pet can stay in the comfort of an experienced dog loving host family. However, it is dreadful to think that figures for owners abandoning pets before they go on vacation, particularly dogs, has been on the rise in recent years.
In 2016, the RSPCA revealed that owners were dumping dogs before their holidays at the rate of one per hour. These are alarming figures, considering that the UK is supposed to be a nation of dog lovers. Worse still, many of these summer abandonment cases have been left for dead in fields and cardboard boxes as well as being left tied up outside rescue centres.
In July last year, the situation had not changed and again, the RSPCA reported a huge spike in the numbers of people abandoning their pets during the summer holidays. Battersea dogs home have reported similar cases of people handing animals in over the summer – some of which are blatantly using the centre for free dog care by having one person hand the dog in and a week later, someone else going to re-claim it. Many people even call up and ask if Battersea boards dogs for free.
Its not just pet dogs that are left to fend for themselves when the owners take off on a break away – the RSPCA report that cats, small pets, farm animals and even snakes in vivariums are left on the streets.
Pet owners have a legal duty of care to make sure the welfare of their animals is catered for – and that includes making sure that someone suitable is available to take care of their pet properly in their absence. Budgeting for holiday care, or for other eventualities, should always be high priority when taking on a new pet. It doesn’t have to cost the earth and is a small price to pay on top of any holiday costs, to make sure your pet is well cared for while you are away.
Holidays4Dogs has a nationwide team of dedicated carers who will look after your dog for a few days or a few weeks and the daily rate is a very reasonable cost for complete peace of mind that your pet will be cared for and loved while you are away.
Many would imagine the festive season is the peak time for pet abandonment but the RSPCA claim that the summer months are actually their busiest period when it comes to dealing with abandoned pets. The reasons why people do this is perplexing, even to animal welfare workers themselves. It could possibly be that people who have bought pets at Christmas find that, by the summer, the novelty has worn off and becomes too much trouble and expense to organize holiday care. Longer daylight hours and warmer weather are also considered to be a factor by some experts as to why people decide to dump their dogs.
Dogs are not always abandoned in streets or in the countryside, however. Many cases the RSPCA has to deal with involve owners who have left their dogs home alone with a large pile of food and water – thinking this is an acceptable arrangement. Leaving pets to fend for themselves in the streets or at home poses serious welfare risks and puts rescue charities under further strain. The RSPCA urges the public to be vigilant when it comes to abandoned pets in their neighbourhoods. Anyone with concerns about pets should call 0300 1234 999.