On Sunday 8th of April, Shropshire’s animal lovers gathered in Shrewsbury’s Quarry Park to raise some money for the local rescue charities. Dogs of all breeds and ages took to the grass to strut their stuff in an all welcoming dog show and it seemed as if all day the sun would just not go away.
Every 30 seconds in the UK someone phones the RSPCA’s animal cruelty line, resulting in 140,000 complaints of animal cruelty and neglect each year. There has been a 10% increase in cases of abuse in Shropshire too, with more than 1,400 complaints of animal cruelty being made in 2016. These were some of the damning statistics made available to the public at Pet Rescue Day.
The event itself was put on by Grinshill Animal Rescue, but they were far from the only charity to make an appearance. In total 22 animal rescues attended the event, with their support ranging from chickens, to donkeys to the dogs of Afghanistan.
Mayor of Shrewsbury Ioan Jones was also in attendance, he joined Grinshill and myself to tour the event stall by stall.
“The whole event has been well organised, well attended and the number of people and stalls here proves the need there is for support for animal causes within the county.” – Ioan Jones
The day was a funfair of excitement and animals however, there were some much darker undertones. It is often easy to forget, having such fun in the sun, that the real reason we were there was to raise both awareness and money for animals that are treated so appallingly. A study by the Kennel Club that only 41% of dog owners ever saw their pups with their mothers, with 53% admitting that they had not see the breeding environment. This means that as many as half of the dogs we see on our streets could be bread from grossly unregulated puppy farms.
The Mayor was in high spirits following a successful day:
“We’ve raised quite a bit of money on our stall which helps toward our rescue, so on the whole I think it’s been a good day.” Said Kate Aspinall of Grinshill Rescue. £491.06 was the final figure on their stall, as well as all the money raised for the other shelters present. This amount over doubled what was taken in any year previous which is fantastic news. The money will be put toward meeting the running costs of the rescue centre as the donations they receive, while good, just never seem to be enough.
The aim of the event was to raise awareness and money but it surpassed that, as after their home check was completed recently, new owners have been found for Tilly the Terrier.
Tilly wasn’t the only pretty pup on show though, have a look at some of Pet Rescue Day’s finest animals: Albumizr (CC: Louie Hughes)