Thursday, September 25, 2014

WOOF! We’re barking mad for Reigning Cats and Dogs

Hold your horses; it’s almost time for the reign of cats and dogs! It’s just one week until Bicentennial Park on the Glebe Foreshore where we will play host to our canine friends and the feline superstars of the internet.

Next Saturday, 4 October, the park will host Rescue Me — a mass dog rehoming and pet rescue information day. Working together with other animal welfare and rescue groups from across the state, RSPCA NSW’s main objective is to rehome as many dogs as possible.

Bicentennial Park is a dog friendly area, so four-legged friends are welcome (on lead) to meet any potential dog buddies. There will be plenty of staff and volunteers on hand to help find your perfect pet match.

Sunday evening, 5 October, is for the rulers of the cat world with the International Cat Film Furstival. Picnic blankets and hampers are set to coat the lawns in front of the silver screen, as the world’s most loved felines strut their stuff. Be prepared for Maru, OMG Cat and many more. Dogs may rule the streets, but cyberspace belongs to the cats. Meee-yow.

No matter whom you believe reigns supreme, pay homage to your monarch during RSPCA NSW’s Reigning Cats and Dogs weekend.

What: Reigning Cats and Dogs, Rescue Me and the International Cat Film Furstival
Where: Bicentennial Park, Glebe Foreshore, Sydney
When: Saturday 4 October: Rescue Me, 10am to 2pm
Sunday 5 October: International Cat Film Furstival, 6pm to 10pm

For details on both events head to

Pave the way to a better shelter

You can leave your mark and help build a better shelter for the animals of NSW by buying a paver and having it engraved with a message on behalf of you, your loved ones or your beloved pets.

The money raised from the RSPCA Sydney Shelter Paver Appeal will go towards the construction of state-of-the-art dog kennels to keep surrendered and abandoned canines happy and comfortable until they find their forever homes.

“Donors are the foundation of the RSPCA. We need them to continue supporting us to build a better future for all creatures great and small," said RSPCA NSW CEO, Steve Coleman.

“Dogs find their way into our care after being abandoned, abused or as injured strays. Without our supporters' generosity we would not be able to address the needs of these animals or the pressing issues of a shelter passed its prime," said Coleman.

Cement your place in RSPCA history so future animals coming into the shelter will walk a path filled with kind messages. Each paver costs $120 and can be paid up front or in $10 monthly instalments. Your donation is tax deductible.

Each brick is a step towards the betterment of animal welfare and can serve as the perfect gift for someone special, a memorial for an animal companion, or as a tribute to your family name.

To purchase a paver head to or call 1300 RSPCA 1 (1300 777 221).

Bread is baaaaad news for sheep

RSPCA NSW is warning the public of the dangers of feeding livestock animals inappropriate food, after a spike in the number of sheep and lambs that have been seen eating bread, with at least five cases being reported in the last month.

RSPCA NSW Vet Dr Guy Weerasinghe says at worst, too much bread can prove fatal; “In severe instances there can be bloating, with the sheep kicking at its stomach. Diarrhoea and the animal becoming quiet and lying on the ground with its head to one side are signs that it’s in trouble. If not treated in time, the sheep could die within 24 hours.”

RSPCA NSW Inspector Tanya Dominguez says that the weather may have something to do with the increase in cases, “due to the dry winter and limited ground cover, we have been seeing people supplementing their sheep’s diet with bread."

Eating bread causes a build-up of lactic acid in the sheep’s  stomach and lowers the pH. This can result in dehydration and the acid damaging the stomach wall causing abscesses and inflammation. The pH level in the sheep’s blood can then become acidic, leading to fatal heart and kidney failure.

Dr Weerasinghe says the best advice is to do your research, “if the animal is sick, ensure they only eat hay or straw. Provide good quality roughage all year round and if in doubt call to your local vet.”

Thursday, September 18, 2014

RSPCA NSW Sydney Shelter bulging with birds

Spring has sprung and the birds are singing, especially at RSPCA NSW’s Sydney Shelter at Yagoona. Following the seizure of more than 140 animals recently, the RSPCA is looking for suitable homes for a variety of birds. Currently available for adoption are:
·         19 Budgies
·         two Quails
·         five Ringnecks
·         one Conure
·         four Galahs
·         four Corellas
·         three Peachfaces
·         four Lorikeets
·         and one Sulpher Crested Cockatoo
Our rescue partners have helped to rehome many of the birds and animals over the past few weeks, including 60 pigeons, however the RSPCA is hoping there are also lots of individuals out there who would like a new feathered friend.
“We would prefer that the birds be housed in free-flight aviaries, or for the budgies, at least a large cage.  Most of the birds are adult, although we do have a few juveniles that could be hand-trained,” Sydney Shelter Supervisor Bree Raeck said.
“Generally these types of birds are adopted quite quickly, so we encourage anyone interested to come in very soon.”

For more information about the birds go to or visit the RSPCA Sydney Shelter at 201 Rookwood Rd, Yagoona.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Lavington woman guilty of neglect

A Lavington woman pleaded guilty to two charges of animal cruelty against 10 dogs in her care, specifically failing to provide veterinary treatment to an animal.  She was sentenced in Albury Local Court on Tuesday 16 September, where she was fined $500 and received a five year prohibition order where she is not to have more than two desexed dogs at any time.

In August 2013 an RSPCA Inspector attended a property in Lavington after a complaint of animal cruelty.

The property owner invited the Inspector into her unit and he noticed a heavy pungent smell of dog faeces and dog urine. The floor was soiled with recent dog faeces and wet patches of urine. He saw a number of small dogs, most of whom appeared filthy and some were seen vigorously scratching at themselves.

The woman said she had ten dogs - five Chihuahuas and five Maltese - and that one two-year-old dog, Bubbles, had a broken leg. She brought out a small tan and white Chihuahua and explained that she had wrapped up the leg with cardboard and sticky tape, and given the dog paracetamol to stop the pain on the first day.  She explained that the dog broke its leg about three days previously, although she didn't know how, and that she had no money to take her to the vet. The woman surrendered Bubbles to the Inspector and the dog was taken to a vet.

A few days later the Inspector returned to the woman's unit to discuss the care of her other dogs. He discovered there were actually 12 dogs in the unit, of which she voluntarily surrendered 10. The Inspector gave her flea treatment for the two remaining dogs and verbal instructions regarding their care.

The surrendered dogs were treated by RSPCA Veterinarians who found that each dog had severe flea infestation and moderate dental disease, with one dog suffering mild dermatitis and another erythema (redness of the skin).

The RSPCA Inspector has since followed up with the woman and is content with the welfare of her two remaining dogs.

All Charges Made Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act

Friday, September 12, 2014

Breeder sentenced for animal cruelty

A Teridgerie man appeared in Dubbo Local Court this week and pleaded guilty to two charges of animal cruelty against 91 dogs. He was convicted, fined $400, placed on a 12 month Good Behaviour Bond, and banned from owning more than 20 adult dogs and 10 puppies for two years.

In mid-2012 an RSPCA Inspector visited a property in Teridgerie via Baradine NSW, following a complaint.

The Inspector, with the defendant, witnessed over 40 Bull Arab dogs, most running free around the property. Several dogs were seen carrying injuries and some were in a poor body condition. The Inspector said he would return when the dogs were in their enclosures after a number of fights broke out amongst the animals.

When the Inspector returned with four other Inspectors, an RSPCA vet, police and Council Rangers, the defendant received a formal caution. The RSPCA vet found that all 91 dogs needed in urgent need of veterinary treatment for hookworm, and the flea burden found on the majority of the dogs showed a significantly contaminated environment and a lack of adequate prevention. Six dogs were found to have a body score of 4 (very underweight).

12 dogs required vet treatment for a range of injuries including four who needed tail amputations, others who were suffering puncture wounds to their body, swollen limbs, eyelids with ulcerated skin and other ulcerated wounds.The vet also noted the animals could not be adequately cared for and supervised under the circumstances they were in and the failure to provide vet treatment to 12 dogs resulted in unnecessary pain and suffering.

Only two dogs were immediately surrendered.

All Charges Made Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Bexley man guilty of starving and neglecting his dog

A man appeared in Kogarah Local Court this week to plead guilty to two charges of animal cruelty against a male Border Collie: failure to provide proper and sufficient food, and failure to provide vet treatment for fleas. 

In June this year an RSPCA Inspector attended the local pound in Carlton following a complaint about a stray dog that had come into their care. 

Upon arrival the Inspector found a male Border Collie in a holding pen in poor body condition, with his ribs, hips and spine easily felt under its coat. There were also signs of flea burden and the animal’s ears were scabby and had been eaten away. 

The dog was immediately seized to be examined by a vet. The vet found the dog was emaciated, weighing 13.1 kg and given a score of 5/5 on the Tufts Animal Care and Condition scale (1 being an ideal condition and 5 the worst). The vet estimated the dog’s ideal weight would be around 18 kilograms. 

The dog was also filthy with an extremely heavy flea infestation and signs of significant anaemia. The examination also revealed evidence of active and chronic fly bite dermatitis on both ear flaps.

The dog was chipped and the RSPCA Inspector and spoke to the owner, who said that the dog had not seen a vet in around four years. 

After a month in RSPCA's care, the Border Collie weighed in at 16.8 kg, an increase of 28 per cent. 

The man was convicted, fined $100 for each charge, ordered to pay vet and boarding costs of $2639.30, and custody of the dog was awarded to the RSPCA. 

Monday, September 8, 2014

We're not kidding: these guys are cute!

RSPCA NSW is calling on those with a back yard and a passion for quirky pets to come on down to the Sydney Shelter in Yagoona to meet some of our adorable baby goats.

Since Dora (the pregnant goat who was shot with an arrow in Weatherill Park in July) gave birth to two beautiful boys, another three have come the RSPCA’s way, all in need of a home.

There is even a lamb up for adoption; it’s a regular farmyard at the Sydney Shelter!

 “Caring for goats is relatively easy, as long as you have the right set up,” said RSPCA NSW Vet Dr Guy Weerasinghe.

“It is essential their future homes are well fenced because goats truly are Houdinis with horns and will roam,” he added.

Caring for goats isn’t all that tricky either. Dr Weerasinghe noted they don't need a large property, but adequate feed and grazing land and trees are important to ensure they have enough to suit their curiosity and hunger.

These baaaa-utiful boys cost just $55 to adopt and come desexed, tagged and vaccinated. Anyone interested in adopting are welcome to come for a meet and greet at the Yagoona shelter.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Thank you to our Million Paws Walk Volunteers

At RSPCA NSW, a fair percentage of our staff work hands-on with the animals that need our care. Naturally, those animals are our priority, so when it comes to other aspects of our work, human resources can be pretty lean at times!

That's why our volunteers are so important. When we have major events such as Million Paws Walk, these amazing people are an integral component of the day's success.

Recently we held a Thank You Day for our Million Paws Walk volunteers to celebrate all the hard work they put in on the day, such as helping with registration and entry, providing water for your four-legged friends, and generally ensuring you and your dog had a great day out.

Here are just a few of the wonderful people who give their time and energy to support our efforts to stop animal cruelty and give animals a second chance. They, and hundreds more just like them who volunteer in all aspects of the organisation, deserve a huge thanks from all of us, on behalf of animals everywhere.

Perhaps you'd like help out too? It doesn't have to be at an event (although they can be lots of fun). Whatever skill you have, you'll be welcome as a volunteer at RSPCA NSW. You might be happy to clean out animal cages, walk dogs, cuddle cats, stuff envelopes, take photos.....the list is endless.

It’s Reigning Cats and Dogs!

And we're not referring to the recent weather!

However on the October long weekend you may need to carry an umbrella to ward off the cuteness as RSPCA NSW celebrates World Animal Day with a weekend 'fursival'. One day will be dedicated to dogs and the other to cats.

On Saturday 4 October, RSPCA NSW is banding together with pet rescue groups from across the state to hold a massive dog adoption day called Rescue Me. Bicentennial Park on the Glebe Foreshore will be flooded with adorable adoption pups and dogs all in need of forever homes. There will be lots of activities including RSPCA Merchandise, a Humane Food BBQ, pet product expo stalls and much more. Rescue me will run from 10am to 2pm.

Then on the Sunday night, it’s time to kick back with picnics and settle in for the International Cat Film Furstival! It’s the first festival of its kind in Australia, starring the likes of Colonel Meow, Grumpy Cat and many more of the internet’s favourite felines.

On the night, there will be many activities for you to enjoy, including the Cattoo Purrlour, tasty food trucks and the option to relax in the exclusive Cat’s Meow Club. Tickets are selling out fast, so make sure you book meow! Gates open at 6pm.

For details on both events head to:

Monday, September 1, 2014

RSPCA NSW Blue Mountains Shelter to stay open

After lengthy consultations with a wide group of community stakeholders and with the backing of the RSPCA NSW Blue Mountains Volunteer Branch and the Blue Mountains working party, RSPCA NSW can announce that a plan has been put in place to ensure the RSPCA Shelter located at Mort St, Katoomba will stay open.

“The decision to close the shelter was a difficult one but the wave of support for this shelter has been overwhelming. With committed community involvement, we believe we have found a way to maintain vital services without having to close our doors,” said RSPCA NSW CEO, Steve Coleman.

Mr Coleman continued by saying that he welcomed the robust conversations that he’d had with the passionate supporters of the shelter. “We listened to what the people of the Blue Mountains had to say,” said Coleman. “I am happy to say that we were able to find a way of keeping the shelter operational.”

The shelter will continue to support the Blue Mountains community with surrenders, adoptions, injured strays, pet advice and education. RSPCA NSW will not tender for the local council pound contract but the organisation is in continued discussions with the council to assist with the gap in service to the Upper Blue Mountains. Shelter hours may be scaled back to accommodate a smaller paid workforce.

To sustain the shelter long term, RSPCA NSW is asking the community to harness the passion they felt when the shelter was under threat of closure to help keep the shelter operational in the longer term.

“RSPCA NSW is a support-driven organisation,” said Mr Coleman. “Without our financial supporters and our tireless volunteers, we would not exist. We have listened to them in making the decision to keep the shelter operational and I hope that they will now back this venture by committing their donations and/or time to help us keep the doors open.

“The Blue Mountains RSPCA Volunteer Branch, who also chair the Blue Mountains working party, has played a vital role in the ongoing discussion surrounding the region’s shelter and is to be applauded for their efforts in facilitating discussions,” Mr Coleman concluded.

The working party will continue to further develop and refine plans, and seek ideas, positive suggestions and offers of help. The contact details are 0409 802 627,, and PO Box 133 Wentworth Falls NSW 2782.