RSPCA report shows four animals are abandoned every hour

Nearly 900 reports of abandoned animals were made to the RSPCA last year in Lincolnshire

Overall, a total of 38,087 abandonment reports were made to the charity’s cruelty line last year - an average of more than 3,000 reports a month, 104 a day or four abandoned animals every hour.

The animal welfare charity has released the stark figures as part of its Cancel Out Cruelty summer campaign which aims to raise funds to keep its

rescue teams on the frontline saving animals in desperate need of help, as well as raise awareness about how we can all work together to stop cruelty for good.

Nyah was left for dead by hare coursers

In Lincolnshire there were 872 abandoned animals reported to the RSPCA in 2021 and 577 so far this year (Jan-Jul 2022).

Heartbreakingly, the number of animals being dumped is also on the rise nationally, with a 17 per cent increase from 2020 to 2021 and a 24 per cent increase in 2022.

The charity fears that a huge rise in pet ownership during the pandemic coupled with the cost of living crisis putting a strain on people’s finances means even more animals are being given up this year.

Dermot Murphy, Chief Inspectorate Officer at the RSPCA, said: “The idea of putting your cat in a cat carrier and taking them to a secluded spot in the woods before walking away, or chucking your dog out of the car and driving off leaving them desperately running behind the vehicle, is absolutely unthinkable and heartbreaking to most pet owners - but sadly we are seeing animals callously abandoned like this every single day.

“We understand that sometimes the unexpected can happen - the pandemic and cost of living crisis proved that - but there is never an excuse to abandon an animal. There are always other options for anyone who has fallen on hard times and can no longer afford to keep their pet.”

From January to July 2021 there were 18,375 abandonment reports compared to 22,908 in the first seven months of this year - a rise of 24%.

A recent report released by the RSPCA in partnership with the Scottish SPCA also showed that the cost of living crisis is the most urgent threat to pet welfare in the UK.

The Animal Kindness Index* showed that 78 per cent of pet owners think the cost of living will impact their animals, almost seven out of 10 (68 per cent) expressing concern that the cost of care was increasing, and a fifth (19 per cent) worried about how they’ll afford to feed their pets.

The study also showed cat owners seem to be most impacted and concerned about cost of living pressures.

This worrying survey comes at a time when the charity is at its busiest period. The RSPCA receives around 90,000 calls to its cruelty line every month, but in the summer (July and August) calls rise to 134,000 a month and reports of cruelty soar to 7,600 each month - a devastating 245 every day.

Dogs were the most abandoned pet, with 14,462 reports of dumped dogs made to the RSPCA last year.

Cats were the second most abandoned pet, with 10,051 reports of cats being callously dumped in 2021.

There were also 3,363 abandoned exotic pets reported to the RSPCA including 1,455 fish and 685 snakes.

In Lincolnshire, Nyah was left for dead by hare coursers.

The underweight lurcher was cruelly abandoned near Scunthorpe.

Nyah has collapsed through exhaustion while under the control of a group of men who were pursuing the illegal blood sport in the area.

The men drove off and left her for dead in a field, where she was picked up by a local resident who was watching the incident and called the police. She was taken into the care of the RSPCA where she was put on a special diet to build her back up to a normal body weight.

The RSPCA received 1,081,018 calls to its Cruelty Line in 2021 and these included reports of;

● 1,094 killings or nearly three animals killed a day

● 632 mutilations or 12 animals brutally mutilated every week

● 7,857 beatings which equates to nearly one animal beaten every hour.

The RSPCA’s rescue teams need support to stay out on the frontline as the only charity rescuing animals and investigating cruelty:

● £2 could help to provide a meal for a dog in our care

● £6 could help pay to feed a dog for a day in our care

● £10 could help pay towards bandages for a dog

● £15 could help pay for a cat or dog’s clinical exam

● £500 could kit out a 4x4 inspector van

Dermot Murphy added: “Our frontline teams are working hard to rescue animals in need this summer, but we can't do it alone - we need your help to Cancel Out Cruelty.”

To help support the RSPCA, visit:

If you cannot donate, there are other ways you can help Cancel Out Cruelty, from volunteering with the RSPCA, holding a bake sale or fundraiser, or taking part in the #50MilesForAnimals challenge.