An­i­mals left to suf­fer in hor­rific cases of cru­elty

Pet neg­li­gence on rise

The Weekend Post - - News - JANESSA EKERT [email protected]

HOR­RIFIC im­ages of a chi­huahua with an un­treated in­fec­tion so bad its right eye is ex­posed have been re­leased by the RSPCA.

It is one of the most shock­ing cases of an­i­mal neg­li­gence that Far North­ern in­spec­tors at­tended last year as an­i­mal cru­elty com­plaints across the Far North soar with 977 re­ported cases.

This fig­ure, which equates to al­most three com­plaints a day, has jumped from the 889 made to the RSPCA the year be­fore.

Far North RSPCA re­gional in­spec­tor Ben New­man said 75 per cent of the time an­i­mal neg­li­gence came down to money with own­ers “happy to let their pet die nat­u­rally” rather than seek treat­ment.

“There are al­ter­na­tives to let­ting the an­i­mal suf­fer un­til it dies or we get called out,” he said. “It’s just dis­ap­point­ing that it al­ways comes down to fi­nance and money. It’s not an ex­cuse to just let the dog suf­fer with­out any treat­ment.”

Cairns south­ern suburbs re­ceived the high­est num­ber of an­i­mal cru­elty com­plaints with a to­tal of 250 and White Rock topped the list as the re­gion’s cru­ellest sub­urb for 2018.

Last year Ma­reeba had the most com­plaints with 53, fol­lowed by Ed­mon­ton at 47 and Bent­ley Park at 40.

Mr New­man said the chi­huahua found wan­der­ing Bent­ley Park in De­cem­ber last year had been a “hor­ren­dous” case.

“The dog’s just been left there to suf­fer for months on end to a point that we got called out and had to have the dog put to sleep on hu­mane grounds,” Mr New­man said.

In an­other case, Mr New­man was able to res­cue a kit­ten that had been trapped in a two- inch space be­tween a re­tain­ing wall and a fence in Cairns city.

“Some­one had heard a kit­ten in dis­tress… I don’t know how it got down there,” he said.

“This lit­tle gin­ger kit­ten was jammed at the bot­tom of the fence, it was in a real bad way.”

Sadly, de­spite be­ing res­cued, the kit­ten died of a heart mur­mur a few weeks later.

With such a huge area to cover, the two Far North in­spec­tors had to pri­ori­tise all jobs on a triage ba­sis.

“There are quite a lot of bad cases,” he said. “We try to help the an­i­mal and if needed pros­e­cute the per­son… hope­fully they can learn a les­son from that but not al­ways.”

Pic­ture: STE­WART McLEAN

HOME BOYS: RSPCA re­gional in­spec­tor Ben New­man at the Cairns shel­ter with Tig­ger the shar pei and Jerry the maremma/golden re­triever that are up for adop­tion.

CRUEL: A chi­huahua which was left to suf­fer. The dog was found in Bent­ley Park.

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