Canberra Times; BIANCA HALL;19 Dec, 2010
RSPCA manager Kristin Cloonan with one of the three-week-old kelpie-cross pups dumped on Thursday.
The RSPCA is being inundated with abandoned and unwanted animals in the lead-up to Christmas. Staff found on Thursday a cardboard box outside the Weston complex containing 10 three-week-old kelpie-cross pups. The pups were covered in fleas, not yet weaned and their eyes had barely opened.”They were just sort of piled on top of each other,” domestic animal manager Kristin Cloonan said. ”They were exceptionally hungry and very, very, thirsty.”Staff are concerned the pups’ mother, who is likely still producing milk, is at risk of severe mastitis. But her pups will be well cared for. When they are old enough, RSPCA staff will send them out in pairs to be fostered with registered volunteers who will introduce them to older dogs, in an attempt to socialise them.RSPCA chief executive Michael Linke said the centre was at capacity, but would not turn animals away. Yesterday, the RSPCA was caring for about 730 animals, including 197 kittens, 67 dogs and 22 puppies and 39 native reptiles. Caring for such a diverse mix of breeds costs about $10,000, or $14 per animal, a day.For more, pick up a copy of today’s Canberra Times