Pets are being dumped like rubbish in Lancashire, according to a new report.
Animal cruelty officers are dealing with an average of more than three cases a day, making the Red Rose county one of the worst places in England for abandoned dogs and cats.
Only Greater London (2,136 cases), Greater Manchester (1,528), West Yorkshire (1,476) and the West Midlands (1,428) have more shameful records than Lancashire (1,045) in the first nine months of this year, says the RSPCA.
And the charity is predicting a cruel winter ahead for pets as figures show no sign of falling.
“Even in a nation of animal lovers, there are thousands of people out there who don’t care about their pets at all. In fact some literally treat them like rubbish,” said RSPCA superintendent Martin Marsh.
“Worse still holidays like Christmas can lead to an increase in abandonments as some people choose to get rid of their pets rather than pay for them to be looked after while they are on holiday.
“Money may be spent on holidays and Christmas presents rather than seeking vet attention for ill or newborn animals, so they are dumped.
“It’s bad enough when we find a box of kittens wrapped in blankets on our doorstep with a note. But now people are deliberately dumping their animals in out of the way places like bins, skips or on waste ground and leaving them to an unknown fate.”
The RSPCA in the North of England has released a list of the most unusual and heartbreaking cases of animals that have been abandoned since last winter. These include a dying dog dumped over a six foot fence onto a concrete floor at the RSPCA Blackpool & North Lancashire Branch Animal Centre and a dog’s body in a bag washed up on the Lancashire coast.
The list is a startling reminder that some really do view animals as commodities that can be discarded without a moment’s thought and the charity is urging people to stay vigilant and alert the RSPCA if they notice boxes, bins or bags that could contain abandoned animals. The charity is expecting around 140,000 calls in November and December alone, with around 50,000 animals needing help between now and Christmas.