Animal cruelty helpline reaches all time high in Ireland

ISPCA Inspectors, photo: ISPCA

The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ISPCA) has launched its annual report. In 2018 a total of 17,338 calls for help were received by the ISPCA National Animal Cruelty Helpline.  

ISPCA inspectors carried out 3,494 investigations with 1,102 animals seized or surrendered and taken into animal welfare care. 18 prosecutions were resolved in court.

“In many cases it is simply a matter of a pet owner not knowing that something has caused or may cause welfare issues. In serious instances where there has been a deliberate act of cruelty or a pet owner refuses to accept advice, we will seize the animal(s) and initiate a prosecution under the Animal Welfare Act 2013”, a spokesperson of ISPCA tells us.

A total of 86,549 calls have been received by the animal welfare organization since the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 (AHWA) was introduced. 17,832 investigations have been carried out, 5,147 animals seized/surrendered and inspectors have been involved with 64 prosecutions for animal cruelty which have been successfully resolved in court.

3 years in prison for animal cruelty
Whilst the ISPCA has been disappointed with the penalties imposed in some cases, they recently saw a three year prison term handed down to a man who pleaded guilty last October to 30 charges of animal cruelty.  The case was the biggest in the ISPCA’s history and involved the removal of 340 dogs and 11 horses.

Funding needed to help more animals
ISPCA Chief Inspector Dowling: “We have never been busier or under so much pressure and our resources are dangerously stretched. There are many areas in Ireland we are currently unable to reach so we need to expand our Inspectorate (currently at nine members). We can do more if we have the resources and we are appealing to the Irish Government and the animal loving public to help us continue this vital work caring for Ireland’s most cruelly treated, neglected and abused animals.”

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