How to report a stray animal emergency, suspected or confirmed cruelty.
There might come a time where you see an injured animal or one in danger and this week we will look at what to do in such a situation. This includes injured animals who appears to be without a caregiver in that moment or animals that appear to be in distress.
WHEN YOU FIND AN INJURED, ABANDONED OR STRAY ANIMAL – HOW TO REPORT IT?
Your own pet should be taken to your vet immediately. Withholding medical care from your animals can possibly be reported as cruelty which is punishable by law.
- Save your local SPCA and welfare organisation’s emergency numbers as well as the areas you frequently travel to.
- If you find an animal that is abandoned, injured or in danger, please DO NOT LEAVE THEM!
- Keep calm as the animal can feel your anxiety. Most of the time they are scared and might run away from you. Never chase them as they can get injured further. If it isn’t safe for you nor the animal to approach, then keep an eye on them or follow from a distance until help arrives.
- Call your nearest SPCA on their emergency number. Call until they answer. Don’t just send a message. An animal’s life depends on it! They have to attend to sick or injured animals that do not appear to have an owner at the time.
- Give an exact location. Drop a pin via WhatsApp, of the specific location or at least a specific address. Not just the house behind no 2 Spuy drive! The SPCA or other welfare organisations can’t drive up and down searching for a hurt animal 30 minutes after you sent a message, nor without a proper description. They rarely find the animal and it might be too late.
- Give a proper description of the animal e.g. a black Labrador with a white patch limping in this area in this direction.
- If you have a food and water rescue pack in your car, you can put it in a safe area for them. In general, we don’t advise giving food, but sometimes this animal has not had any for days or it can get the animal to come to you.
- If you can get close or can move them out of harms way, do so and stay with them.
- If you have something warm close by and they are cold, cover them.
- Take them to the nearest veterinarian or SPCA if possible, as it will save time. The Vet will handle the emergency and contact the SPCA if needed.
- If you hit the animal with your car, please do not drive off. Rather lie and say you found them than leave them to suffer and die!
- Follow up until the animal is safe. You are at that time all they’ve got!
NOTE: Don’t report emergencies through Facebook as it is not monitored 24/7 and precious time could be lost.
REPORTING CONFIRMED OR SUSPECTED CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.
It is your moral duty to report cruelty to animals. If you are in doubt, still report it as a welfare check might be in order to confirm. Read more here on SIGNS OF CRUELTY.
Most organisations will require some paperwork for this, but it will stay confidential and will not be revealed to the accused.
- 1. If it is safe for you to take video or pictures do so.
- 2. Get the exact address or pin drop.
- 3. Contact your local SPCA.
- 4. Assist with the case where possible.
DO YOU KNOW OF AN ABANDONED ANIMAL OR SAW ONE BEING DUMPED?
Abandoning an animal is an act of animal cruelty and an offence in terms of the Animal Protection Act No 71 of 1962. If you see or know of someone who has moved and left their animals behind or who goes away for long periods of time and leave their animals alone or those who dump them somewhere, please report it!
Anyone can open a case of abandonment or cruelty at your nearest SAPS. Even if you think nothing will happen, you are creating a paper trail which could save an animal’s life in the future. You can also contact your local SPCA or other animal welfare organisations for guidance.
- Bethal SPCA – 066 397 firstname.lastname@example.org EMERGENCIES 072 573 3122
- Highveld Ridge SPCA – 082 869 email@example.com EMERGENCIES 082 222 1122
- For other towns, visit the NSPCA website.
Thank you to each of you who are reporting cruelties or animals in distress. You can be the voice for the voiceless! Next week we will look at what to do if your pet is poisoned.
WHEN YOU KNOW BETTER, DO BETTER!