As you pack up for your sunny break this year, spare a thought for the dogs who will be spending what should be a happy time alone and afraid. Latest statistics from the RSPCA have revealed a tragic rise in the number of animals being abandoned to fend for themselves over the summer months. In 2015, the charity rescued 9069 deserted animals, but peak admissions were in July, at over 1000, with June and August both much higher than average too.
Cases include the likes of Peanut, a Lurcher puppy found huddled under a bush in Essex. Despite being left in a very remote spot and weighing less than half of what she should have, Peanut received the help she needed in time - but many other aren't so fortunate.
Staffordshire Bull Terrier Maverick was only a young pup when he was left outside London Victoria Coach Station, after his owners discovered they would not be able to continue their journey with a puppy in tow. They then lied to staff, saying the dog had been collected by a friend, and boarded their coach. Half an hour later, Maverick was discovered tied to lamppost, and was taken to the RSPCA's Putney Animal Hospital.
RSPCA Supt Simon Osborne said: “People often think that Christmas is the time we see the most abandoned animals - but it is actually the summer.
“Every day our inspectors face cases where animals have been left abandoned in fields, dumped in boxes, left for dead at the side of roads and even left outside our animal centres and hospitals. It is just heartbreaking. These poor animals are often just dumped without a care for their welfare or what might happen to them.
“We will never know why these animals are just discarded like rubbish. It could be for any number of reasons. Whether it is the fact that more pets are abandoned in the summer because the novelty of their Christmas present pet has worn off by the summer, they don’t want the responsibility of finding someone to look after their pet while they are away on holiday or whether more pets are found dumped because of the longer daylight hours we will never know. It could be any number of reasons.
"There is a huge strain on our resources at this time of year because of this. Many abandoned animals that are rescued by the RSPCA are very badly neglected and poorly so need urgent vet care and often hospital treatment.”
Find out more about this problem via www.rspca.org.uk/abandonment and tweet your support: #NeverAlone