18:11 Tuesday 31 December 2013

The furry friends who need new homes

Written bySARAH BOULD

THESE pictures of pets at the RSPCA 
shelter in Stretton in need of loving homes are sure to pull at the heartstrings of any animal lover.

Although the centre has seen an influx of people wanting to take animals home with them since Christmas, with around 15 cats and dogs re-homed at the weekend, there is still a long list of pets waiting to be housed at the centre.

Manager Yvonne Askew told the Mail: “I think we are busy after Christmas because people want to get the festivities out of the way before getting an animal.

“It would be nice if the cats that have been with us for a long time could find a home.”

Cats are in abundance at the Hillfield Lane centre, with some cared for by staff who take them in and act as ‘foster carers’. Kittens are often taken into the centre by owners who have not had the rest of their cats spayed or neutered.

Employee Pat Boden has looked after as many as ten cats before. She said: “You have to be strong-willed not to keep them at home.”

Though the centre is full to capacity with cats, dogs and rabbits, some pet owners simply ignore the rules. Anybody who can no longer care for their pet should call the 
shelter first to make an appointment. However, some people dump their pets there. Recently two cats were left at the front door, and a Mastiff dog. Plans are in place to erect new gates to ensure this no longer happens.

The centre relies completely on funding and receives no money from the charity’s national branch.

Yvonne added: “We would like to thank readers for their 
overwhelming response we have had to a request for donations. We are so grateful that people think of the animals at this time of year. It is humbling to think people have still got time to come and give gifts and money.”

Buster the dog, pictured, is their longest standing resident. If you can give him, or any other animal a home, call 01283 569165 or email rspca-burtonbranch.org.uk

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