Animal cruelty reports rise in Mandurah, Rockingham

Rhani was found extremely neglected. PIC: RSPCA WA

RSPCA WA has revealed the local government areas that saw the most animal cruelty reports in the last financial year.

The organisation received 7126 animal cruelty reports in 2022-23, an average of more than 19 a day.

The City of Rockingham jumped from fifth to fourth on the list with 378 animal cruelty reports in the last financial year, an increase of 11 per cent on 2021-22.

The City of Mandurah went from eight to seventh, with 268 cruelty reports, a 32 per cent hike.

RSPCA WA CEO Ben Cave said the cost-of-living crisis had been key theme in 2022-23. 

"Reports about owners failing to seek vet care spiked by 18 per cent last financial year, compared to 2021-22. Meanwhile, reports of animals without enough food or water were up 22 per cent," he said.

"On the surface these reports might seem less serious than violent acts of cruelty. But the sad reality is, theanimals in these cases have often suffered day in, day out for weeks or months. We understand owners fall on hard financial times, but ignoring your pet’s pain or hunger is not a solution, it’s animal cruelty."

Animal cruelty hotspot list 2022-23. PIC: RSPCA WA

 Mr Cave said most of the cases prosecuted by RSPCA WA last financial year related to animals deprived of their most basic needs. 

"In 2022-23, RSPCA WA finalised 29 prosecutions relating to 65 dogs, 4 cats and 8 horses," he said.

"Most of the dogs were from puppy farms where their medical and behavioural needs had been badlyneglected. They were living in squalor, being bred time and time again for profit."

Mr Cave said RSPCA WA had ramped up events to help struggling pet owners.

"In hotspots where cruelty is prevalent, RSPCA WA works hard to improve standards of animal welfare, but we’re still getting a consistently high number of calls," he said.

"With the rising cost of living hitting WA families hard, we’re worried neglect of those basic needs is only going to increase. If you’re no longer able to care for your animals to the standard they deserve you must reach out for help sooner rather than later."

The RSPCA relies on the community to report incidents of suspected cruelty and neglect.

Report cruelty 24/7 on 1300 CRUELTY (1300 278 358) or at rspcawa.org.au

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