RSPCA report 16% increase in animal cruelty against dogs

One of two puppies found abandoned in a cardboard box in Peterborough, this one had a laceration on its left side.

One of two puppies found abandoned in a cardboard box in Peterborough, this one had a laceration on its left side. - Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA released figures showing almost 600 animal cruelty reports in Cambridgeshire involving dogs and a “significant increase” nationwide since the pandemic began.

The animal welfare charity released figures stating that last year alone 44,427 reports of dog cruelty involving 92,244 dogs were reported to them; a 16% increase from 2020’s 79,513 dogs.

The 44,427 reports are reports of animals abandoned, used in illegal activity, intentional harmed, left unattended, neglected and trapped.

596 of these reports came from Cambridgeshire and 103 of these were classified as intentional harm.

The figures were released as part of the animal welfare charity’s Cancel Out Cruelty campaign.

The campaign has been put in place to raise funds to keep RSPCA rescue teams on the frontline saving animals in need of help as well as raise awareness about how people can work together to prevent animal cruelty.

RSPCA dog welfare expert Dr Samantha Gaines said: “Every year, we see many dogs coming into our care bearing the physical and mental scars that were inflicted at the hands of the very people who were meant to keep them safe and love them unconditionally.

The other of two puppies found in Peterborough, this one had a laceration on its side and a portion of its ear taken off.

The other of the two puppies found in Peterborough, this one was found with a laceration of its side and a portion of its ear taken off. - Credit: RSPCA

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“We are supposed to be a nation of animal lovers and dogs are ‘man’s best friend’ as the saying goes but in reality, we receive many cruelty reports every day about dogs who have suffered the most unimaginable cruelty and a 16% increase of dogs being cruelly treated in a year is really concerning.

“Our officers have dealt with all sorts of horrific incidents including dogs repeatedly beaten, stabbed, burned, drowned, poisoned, some have been left to die from starvation.

“With the public’s help in reporting cruelty they have been able to save many dogs from ongoing abuse.

“During the summer we see a rise in cruelty and this year as we have seen such a massive increase in dog ownership since lockdown we are bracing ourselves for even more reports.

“As a charity, we are bracing to tackle a summer of suffering but we cannot do this without your help and we rely on public support to carry on our rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming work.”

If you’d like to help the RSPCA or find further information about their service, please visit www.rspca.org.uk