Friday, October 31, 2014

Dog left with weeping tumours, man banned from owning animals for 10 years

On 23rd April 2014, an RSPCA Inspector attended a property in southwest Sydney in response to a complaint about a dog suffering from a number of wounds on its body.

The Inspector saw a white Bull Terrier lying in the back yard with a number of open wounds observed on its abdomen. No one was home and the dog appeared unresponsive.

Police attended the property and assisted with the seizure of the dog, the dog was transported to the RSPCA Sydney Shelter by the Inspector for veterinary examination.

The RSPCA vet found the dog was very underweight. The dog was given a body condition score of four out of five, where one is ideal body condition and five is emaciated.

There was discharge from both eyes which appeared reddened, as well as discharge from both ears. There were also multiple ulcerative lumps haemorraging puss on the dog’s abdomen and groin area.

The dog was diagonsed with mild blood loss anaemia  and  she  had  evidence  of  severe  chronic  inflammation  and infection.

On the 24th of April 2014 two RSPCA Inspectors met with the dog's owner for a formal interview at his home. The man stated he owned the dog for around eight years. He said he’d known about Jezz’s tumors for over a year, and despite knowing she needed vet treatment failed to do so as he couldn't afford it.

The man told the Inspectors he tried to treat Jezz’s wounds himself using antiseptic and dressings. He also expressed some remorse for the way in which he had allowed his dog to suffer.

The vet found that failure to provide necessary and timely veterinary treatment for the dog resulted in unnecessary pain, suffering and discomfort.

As a result of the animal having such a severe and chronic progression of the disease, it was deemed cruel to keep her alive and she was subsequently humanely euthanised.

The owner appeared in Campbelltown Local Court on 28th October 2014 and pleaded guilty to two charges of animal cruelty, one charge to commit an act of aggravated cruelty and one failure to provide vet treatment for tumours, against a female Bull Terrier.

The man was put on a ten year prohibition order, an 18 months good behaviour bond, fined $4,000 and $675 in professional fees.

Snake season slithers in - What to do if a snake is on your property

Photo credit: Australia Zoo

As the weather warms up, RSPCA NSW is already receiving dozens of calls each week relating to snake sightings in residential areas.

Already RSPCA NSW has received over 150 calls since the start of spring, including three reports of beheaded animals.

“Snakes play a very important role in the Australian environment and are protected under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. You should not attempt to harm or remove them. Offenders can be hit with an $11,000 fine and/or six months in jail, and the maximum penalty for killing a protected reptile is $22,000 and/or 2 years in jail,” said Chief Inspector David OShannessy.

Out of the 150 calls received by RSPCA NSW so far, more than 15 people have mistaken a Blue Tongue lizard for snake. Blue Tongues can hiss as a defence mechanism and are more likely to wander on to people’s porches and generally be more visible.

“A standard question we now ask for snake sightings is ‘does it have legs?’. We usually get laughed at, but sometimes the answer is ‘yes’ and we can save wildlife rescue groups a lot of time,” said RSPCA NSW Contact Centre Manager Kylie Scott.

Generally snakes are shy, reclusive animals and will avoid confrontation with humans at all costs, preferring to flee if given the opportunity.

“If it does not move on in a few hours contact WIRES for advice. If you have found an injured snake report it to either the RSPCA or WIRES,” Mr OShannessy concluded.

Best Advice – Keep your lawn short and yard tidy to reduce the likelihood of snakes.

Monday, October 27, 2014

RSPCA NSW offers reduced rate pet health care in Walgett and Lightning Ridge

RSPCA NSW, along with the Walgett Shire Council and local Walgett and Lightning Ridge veterinarian Dr Enid Coupé, is offering reduced-rate veterinary services to pensioners and lower income earners as part of RSPCA NSW’s Community Animal Welfare Scheme (CAWS).

The program is available to eligible residents in Walgett from the 27th to the 29th of October. The initiative will run in Lightening Ridge on Thursday 30th October. Over the four days, as many as 100 animals are expected to be desexed.

“We are incredibly lucky to have the ongoing support of both Walgett Regional Council for the ninth year running and passionate local vet Enid Coupé,” said Dr Ann-Margret Withers, RSPCA NSW Programs Veterinarian.

“This program enables many residents of our district to have their pets desexed, vaccinated and health checked at a very reduced price. This helps to reduce the number of unwanted puppies and kittens that are seen in our shire,” said Dr Enid Coupé.

CAWS also advocates education and public awareness to teach community members and school-aged children about responsible pet ownership, animal welfare, humane treatment of animals and safety concepts around animals such as bite prevention.

Walgett and Lightning Ridge residents can contact the participating clinics for more information:

  • Walgett Vet Clinic: 02 6828 1090
  • Lightning Ridge Vet Clinic: 6829 2199

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

RSPCA NSW at Sydney’s first Dog Lovers Show!

RSPCA NSW is joining with Sydney’s first Dog Lovers Show to enjoy all things canine.

The three-day event at the Royal Hall of Industries and the Hordern Pavilion is set to see thousands of dog lovers converge to gain a greater respect and understanding for canines in general, or the pooch in your life.

RSPCA NSW’s Education Team will be on hand to provide information about the RSPCA in the community and assisting owners to give their animal the best life possible.

“For those considering making the commitment to welcome a dog into their family, or  wanting to make sure they are offering the best care, the Dog Lovers Show and RSPCA stall is a great one-stop shop,” said Mark Jeffrey, RSPCA NSW Executive Manager Education and Training.

Though it is a dogs-day out for dog lovers, four-legged family members are asked to stay home for the indoor event.

WHEN:  Friday 7 – Sunday 9 November 2014
OPENING TIMES: 10am - 5pm each day
WHERE: Royal Hall of Industries & the Hordern Pavilion, Moore Park, Sydney

For more information and to pre-purchase tickets, visit

Friday, October 17, 2014

ANIMAL CRUELTY CHARGES: Cessnock man convicted of animal cruelty

On 8 July, 2014 an RSPCA NSW Inspector attended a property on Cessnock in response to a complaint about two emaciated dogs.

No one was home but the dogs could be seen in the back yard. One black dog was seen tied to the clothes line and was in an emaciated body condition. Another tan coloured dog was seen free in the yard, also emaciated, very lethargic and unwilling to walk.

Both dogs were immediately seized to be taken for veterinary assessment at the Hunter Shelter in Rutherford.

The vet found the tan female dog weighed 17.4 kilograms, with a prominent skeleton and severe loss of muscle mass. She had such a severe flea infestation; her skin was covered in a thick layer of flea dirt. Blood test results showed regenerative anaemia and low blood protein, while a faecal sample showed large numbers of hookworm, roundworm and whipworm eggs.

Initial veterinary findings for the black male dog were that he weighed 18.9 kilograms, also with a prominent skeleton and severe loss of muscle mass. Microscopic examination of a faecal sample revealed large numbers of hookworm and whipworm eggs. He was ravenous when offered food.

Both dogs were treated for their gastrointestinal parasite infestations and given routine vaccinations, flea treatments and placed on a high quality diet.

The vet concluded the dogs had not had proper and sufficient food for at least four weeks, while they went without proper veterinary treatment for their heavy flea and worm burden for at least a fortnight.

Almost two months later and after several failed attempts by RSPCA NSW to contact the owner of the dogs, the owner called the RSPCA in relation to the animals seized from his property.

In a recorded interview with an Inspector on 1 September 2014 the owner stated he was the owner of the black dog, called “Boofer”, and the tan female, called “Millie”, belonged to his ex-partner.

When asked when he last wormed the dogs, the owner replied “about three months ago before you took them and I knew they needed to be wormed again after she had pups.” He surrendered the dogs to the RSCPA.

The owner appeared in Cessnock Local Court 15 October 2014 and pleaded guilty to two charges of animal cruelty against two dogs, Failure to provide veterinary treatment to two dogs and failure to provide proper and sufficient food to two dogs.

The man has had a two year prohibition from the purchase, acquisition or custody of any animals and charge $2,744.35 in veterinary costs.

All charges are under NSW Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and Regulation

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Kitten season sees urgent need for foster carers in the Hunter region

As the weather heats up, the RSPCA Hunter Shelter in Rutherford is calling for foster carers to help with the hundreds of extra kittens and cats that will stream through the doors during kitten season.  The RSPCA, Nova Pooch Rescue, Nine Lives Four Paws and Cat Rescue Newcastle have joined forces to better prepare for the annual influx of kittens over the warmer months that inundate the Hunter region’s shelters.

Along with kittens, the RSPCA needs help caring for a range of animals, including puppies, mothers with litters, animals that require cage rest after surgery and those that need socialisation and rehabilitation before they go up for adoption.

“Not all animals in our care can be adopted into their forever homes straight away. Some need some extra time and TLC. RSPCA foster carers, and those of our rescue partners, open their hearts and homes to help these animals find their happy endings. It’s incredibly rewarding,” said RSPCA Hunter Shelter Supervisor Sharon Wynne.

Those interested are invited to attend an information session at the RSPCA Hunter Shelter to go through the requirements of the foster care program.

“No formal training or qualifications are needed. The RSPCA is here to support our carers every step of the way, including training and supplies,” said Ms Wynne. “Generally time, patience and TLC are all our animals need.”

For more information, please contact the RSPCA Hunter Shelter on (02) 4939 1555.

It was Reigning Cats and Dogs all weekend

To celebrate World Animal Day on October 4, the Glebe foreshore in Sydney became extra pet-friendly with a two-day festival called Reigning Cats and Dogs.  Hosted by RSPCA NSW, this event was split into two days – one for the dogs and the other for the cats.

Rescue Me was a mass rehoming day for dogs that saw animal welfare and rescue groups coming together to find deserving dogs homes.  It was a great success. The supporters, potential adopters and rescue groups that attended had nothing but positive feedback for the event. We had a total of 31 adoptions on the day with another 91 dogs looking like they will find their forever families as a result of the event.

The RSPCA Internet Cat Film Furstival on day two was also a huge winner, exceeding all our expectations. This event featured over an hour of short digital films about cats. A whopping 1,958 cat lovers attended the event – many dressed as felines. There are obviously a lot of crazy cat people out there and it’s so exciting we are now able to give our supporters what they’ve been asking for – an event for cats!

Next year we want heaps more Aussie content. So if you have a kooky, curious or plain cute cat, please send us footage today. You can go here to submit your videos to Who knows, you might feature in next year’s festival – yes it’s coming back!

Over both days, we are happy to report that we raised $100,726.65!

Check out our Short Tails for a wrap up of the event:

Check out the official photos from Rescue Me and Cat Film Furstival on Flickr.



Hills – Event Sponsor, Rescue Me and Cat Film Furstival:
ClawBag – Event Partner, Cat Film Furstival:
Moonlight Cinemas – Event Partner, Cat Film Furstival:

Thanks to all Volunteers

A huge thank you must go to all our volunteers. You gave up all or part of your weekend to help out at the festival. We are so lucky to have such passionate animal lovers who can pitch in when we need it. Whether you walked an excited puppy or placed temporary cat tattoos on someone dressed as a tiger, you helped us raise awareness and donations for the cause. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Monday, October 13, 2014

That's a wrap!

To help drive the message that RSPCA NSW is more than a shelter, Avery Dennison were kind enough to donate the printing of two car wraps.

These two car wraps have been used to promote RSPCA Academy and Team RSPCA.

RSPCA Academy is an extension of our education team, helping members of the community to move into the animal industry through teaching best practice. RSPCA Academy also helps to further train people already in the animal industry, with microchipping and first aid courses.

Team RSPCA is our group of amazing fundraisers, that go out of their way to help the RSPCA. By organising personal fundraising, running marathons, trekking across the globe or by simply choosing to donate their birthday funds to the animals in our care.

A big thank you goes to Shannon and Peter from Avery Dennison for donating these car wraps, and helping us promote these services.

If your organisation would like to donate to the RSPCA, please visit the Corporate Supporter section of our website.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Corporate Support Day: Lend Lease

The fabulous team at Lend Lease held their annual community day at our Sydney Shelter on Thursday, 18th of September.


The team of 30 employees were busy bees on the day, cleaning and painting our behaviour building, fixing one of the sandpits, painting dog houses, returfing grass and building two beautiful veggie gardens for our resident bunnies.

We are truly thankful for the support of Lend Lease and we look forward to next year’s project!

We are always in need of corporate volunteer groups to help out with our events and administration.

We have a range of fundraising events throughout the year including Million Paws Walk, Cupcake Day and local community fundraising activities that require volunteers.

If your business is interested in getting involved with RSPCA NSW, you can:

RSPCA Tricks for Treats

Here’s a healthy Halloween habit. Instead of stocking up on sweets and lollies, why not buy treats and toys for animals in RSPCA shelters instead?

Tricks for Treats is RSPCA NSW’s annual call for rewards and amusement for the animals in its care while they wait for their furever families. Everyone is encouraged to donate pet-friendly treats and toys in the lead up to 31 October.

“Treats are an integral part of our positive reinforcement training methods with the animals,” said Executive Manager - Animal Care Services Brendon Neilly. “All our staff and volunteers are encouraged to work with all of our dogs and even our cats every day so we go through a lot of treats and toys  in our shelters. These sessions are an investment in our animals finding their forever home and reinforce that connection between our people and our animals. ”

While treats are used as a reward system for training, toys provide comfort and stimulation for animals staying in an unfamiliar environment. 

“Our adoption animals stay with us as long as it takes for them to find a new home,” said Mr Neilly. “Some are with us for quite a while, so we try to provide as much enrichment and comfort for them as we can while they’re here.  One of our animals “Hurley” who is deaf, has even learnt sign language.”

Your treats and toys for dogs and cats can be dropped off at any RSPCA NSW shelter or care centre across New South Wales:

Central Coast
Lot 455 Reeves Road
6-10 Burlington Place
54 Industrial Road
71 William Street
201 Rookwood Rd
114 Flatrock Road
RSPCA Care Centre Rouse Hill
Rouse Hill Town Centre
Windsor Road,
Rouse Hill
RSPCA Care Centre Tuggerah
Tuggerah Homemaker Centre
Cnr Bryant Drive & Wyong Rd