The following articles have appeared in the London Evening Standard

related to Animal Welfare



22nd February 2012

Animal refuges overwhelmed in strays crisis

Miranda Bryant

The number of stray cats and dogs in London is at record levels, animal welfare charities warned today.

They are struggling to cope as owners dump pets because they cannot afford to keep them. The problem is being worsened by "backstreet breeders" selling or giving away dogs and owners who fail to get their pets neutered.

The RSPCA says there are thousands of stray dogs and cats roaming the streets at any one time, with little to no space in the sanctuaries. Vet David Grant - who has worked for the RSPCA for more than 25 years - said the rescue centres and animal hospitals were "overloaded".

Mr Grant, who works at the Harmsworth animal hospital in Holloway, said: "This is to do with indiscriminate breeding and also to do with the recession as well. "One of the major problems here is we're overloaded with cats, kittens and dogs that we're trying to get out to our centres but they're full as well. This is probably the worst I've seen it in the 44 years I've been a vet. Local authorities are being inundated. It's an overpopulation problem and nobody's coping very well."

Battersea Dogs and Cats Home said last month it received a record number of calls. The RSPCA has pledged to end animal overpopulation in five years.

It called on Londoners to consider the financial implications of pets before buying one and called on pet owners to neuter and microchip animals.

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