THE KILKENNY Society of Prevention of Care to Animals is ‘in grave danger of closing’ unless membership and funds increase significantly over the coming months.
“We need to dramatically increase membership if we are to continue to take in sick or injured animals,” chairman Anton Mazer told the Kilkenny People.
The Kilkenny SPCA, founded in 1882 at Kilkenny Castle is a voluntary, not for profit organisation whose main purpose is to actively practice and engage in all aspects of animal welfare. “Funding for the day to day running of our society is our first and foremost fundraising priority. Our traditional sources of funding have been curtailed serverly because of the extreme downturn in the economy and will most likely not be there for the forseeable future. The very harsh winters have also had an effect on animals. More animals are being abandoned and not cared for because of the recession and additional demands will be made on our services, resources and volunteers in 2007 our expenditure was in the region of €60,000, all from voluntary donations, active fundraising and a number of small grants,” he said.
The organisation assists all distressed animals and tries to rehome them or release them back into the wild. “When we receive a call the inspector Noel O’Donoghue goes out to see what can be done and if needs me the animal is brought to the vet. It can be anything from a badger, to a bird to a dog. The animal is cleaned up and his health is checked. We look for a rehoming situation and if they are wild we put them back where we found them,” he added.
Fundraising co ordinator, Ciara Murphy said that there had been ‘a massive increase’ in the number of abandoned animals. “We are in grave danger of closing and our costs are increasing. We were down €8,500 at the start of the year and our funds again are down on last year and it is very hard to get sponsorship. Veterinary fees are huge and there is no other service in the area that rescues wild animals. If a wild animal is found by a member of the public there is nowhere for them to go and the animal could die,” she added.
Ms Murphy also encouraged people to make an informed and considered decision when buying a pet. “It is a well known saying but a pet is for life and not for Christmas. If someone is thinking of getting a pet we would encourage them to think and see if their lifestyle suits having a pet or consider other options,” she added.
An information night will take place on January 11 at 7.30pm at Harrys Bar in Langtons for anyone interested in becoming a member or volunteering. Membership to the Kilkenny SPCA is €20 for adults, €15 for concessions and €250 for life membership.