Monday, March 16, 2015

We have moved!

Our blog has moved!

Our blog has moved and you can now find all of our new and future blogs on our website.

We will continue to share our stories, events, and other interesting items on our new blog and hope that you find them enjoyable or informative - maybe even share them with your friends and family too!

We thank all of our loyal blog readers, and hope that you will join us on our new blog.

We hope to see you all there!

RSPCA NSW.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Free feline adoptions this weekend

Almost 100 felines hope to find their forever families this weekend, as the RSPCA Sydney Shelter in Yagoona waives feline adoption fees for three days only.

The shelter is struggling to cope with the number of felines in care after an especially busy kitten season . So far since kitten season began in September, 167 cats and 637 kittens have been rehomed by the Sydney Shelter alone.

“While there are 91 cats currently at the shelter, there are another 187 kittens in foster care and more come through our doors every day,” Sydney Shelter Manager Donna Hough said.

“Each cat is unique and has their own special personality,” said Ms Hough.  “Whether someone is looking for a real cuddle bug or a more independent cat, we’re sure to have one to suit anyone’s lifestyle.”

All standard adoption processes will take place to ensure the cat is the right match for the new home. Information is provided about health care and new adopters have access to staff support with any questions over the coming weeks.

For more information about just some of the many cats currently available for adoption, visit Adoptapet.com.au.

WHAT: Free Cat Adoption Day
WHEN: Friday-Sunday, 13-15 March. 9:30- 3:30 each day
WHERE: Sydney Shelter, 201 Rookwood Road, Yagoona

All RSPCA cats are desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, flea-treated and wormed. Please see our FAQ's below for further information or contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are these all the cats in the shelter, or are there some 100% healthy or pedigree ones that are being kept aside?
These are all the Adoption ready cats. There are no cats being kept aside, there are currently 59 adult cats and 30 kittens available to be adopted at the shelter. There are no extra charges for defined breed/pedigree cats in our shelters.

Is this across the state or just at the RSPCA Sydney Shelter?
Our Sydney Shelter is nearing catpacity (excuse the pun!), so we are only running this at the Sydney Shelter (201 Rookwood Rd Yagoona). While it is only being run in Sydney, this in turn will provide the Sydney shelter with an opportunity to assist other facilities by accepting more cats in.

Are the cats desexed and vet-checked?
All cats adopted through RSPCA are vet checked, microchipped, vaccinated and desexed.

If you are giving them away for free, how do you know it’s the right home? What is the adoption process?
All normal adoption processes will take place. Animal Attendants will ensure that the cat is the right match for the new home, e.g.  a particular cat may not be suited to go to a home with children as it prefers a quiet mature household. An Animal attendant will provide the interested adopter with details about that particular feline, including what treatments (parasite control, microchipping, desexing etc) it has received and what regular treatments will be required, including the dates they are due (flea, intestinal worming, vaccinations). They will discuss the diet the feline has been on. Ideas on how to best introduce the new cat to your existing human and pet family and any other questions the adopter has. The adopter will go home with an animal health check card with the date of parasite control, vaccination and desexing stitch removal (if needed). As well as a Cat adoption booklet which answers common questions about cat care, the RSPCA is able to provide over the phone support if required once the animal has gone to the new home and the owners have a question or concern.

Are they all actually sick or have they just been exposed to cat flu/calici/something else?
Some are healthy;  some are recovered from cat flu or calici;  others are currently being treated for cat flu/calici. If any cat has an ongoing medical condition, our animal attendants or vets will speak with you before adoption.

Are they recovered or do some still need medication and extra TLC?
The ones that are currently on medication are ok to go to their new home, in fact they are likely to get better quicker once in a loving home receiving TLC

Are these all the cats in the shelter, or are there some 100% healthy or pedigree ones that are being kept aside? 
There are no cats being kept aside, there are currently 59 adult cats and 30 kittens available to be adopted at the shelter. There are no extra charges for defined breed/pedigree cats in our shelters.

How many cats and kittens have you rehomed recently?
In the last six months, we have rehomed 167 cats and 637 kittens from the Sydney Shelter. With another 197 cats and 205 kittens from Petbarns in Sydney. That’s 1,206 felines that have families, but more need to find there forever families.

How many cats and kittens do you have in foster?

13 cats, 187 kittens and there are currently a couple of cats/kittens awaiting foster at the shelter.

I can’t adopt a cat, what can I do to help?
You can share this promotion across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram OR you can help our shelters by making a donation here: Make a Donation
  

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Deadly Parvovirus on the rise in the Hunter

Dog owners in the Hunter region are being urged to ensure their pets are up-to-date with their parvovirus vaccinations with a spike in cases.

“We are seeing dogs fall ill across a large area at the moment,” RSPCA Hunter Vet Manager Dr Simone Cooper said. “Dogs have fallen ill in the Lake Macquarie region as well as Rutherford, Maitland, Singleton, Cesssnock and Kurri,” Dr Cooper said.

“We've even seen dogs die from four homes in the same street in Weston, the situation is incredibly serious and a major concerns with the weather set to stay warm and see the virus thrive,” she said.

Parvovirus (often referred to as parvo), is a viral infection that affects young puppies and unvaccinated adult dogs.  The disease is incredibly hardy, and can survive up to a year in the environment. It’s highly contagious and can be contracted through direct or indirect contact with infected dog faeces. 

“Even if dogs don’t come in direct contact with an infected dog, they can still contract the virus through contaminated objects such as shoes, clothes, even the ground,” Dr Cooper said. 

Once infected, dogs typically start to show signs within seven to ten days.  Symptoms may include loss of appetite, lethargy, vomiting and profuse, bloody diarrhoea which can quickly lead to dehydration.  If left untreated, severe shock and subsequent death can occur within a 24-hour period.

The only way to protect your dog against this deadly disease is through preventive vaccination.  Puppies are first vaccinated at six to eight weeks of age, with a booster two to four weeks later. Dogs then need another booster every year.

 “People cannot underestimate the potency and prevalence of this virus right now. If in any doubt about your pets’ vaccination history, speak to your vet immediately,” Dr Cooper concluded.

Our vet services can help you protect your dog. Contact us on 02 9770 7555 for more information.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Luck of the Irish Wolfhound


St Patricks' Day is an Irish cultural and religious celebration held annually on the 17th March. Although originating in Ireland, it has since become recognized world-wide, with many people embracing the event by wearing green and decorating with shamrocks.

In celebration of St Patrick's Day, RSPCA NSW is highlighting our current Irish Wolfhounds, and why they make such great pets!

The Irish Wolfhound is of ancient origins and in Ireland, these dogs were favoured by Irish Chiefs for hunting wolves and Irish elk. Irish Wolfhounds are known to be big-hearted, gentle, and sensitive creatures, but their size is an important consideration, in fact Irish Wolfhounds are the tallest breed of dog!

Like all sighthounds, the Irish Wolfhound is known to love chasing and running, but they are generally model citizens with other dogs, pets and children. Their great size can be intimidating, but due to their gentle nature, are generally not known to be good guard dogs.



RSPCA NSW has six Irish Wolfhound crosses in care which are currently looking for their new home. Click on their profiles below:




You can view all of our animals available for adoption at www.adoptapet.com.au

Happy St Patrick's Day!


Man fined, banned from owning animals

On 18th of December 2013, the RSPCA received a complaint in relation to a dog taken to Blacktown Council Pound.  Witnesses described the dog as being skin and bones, missing large amounts of hair and having scabs, pus and sores over its body.

The Pound staff advised the man with the dog,  that the animal required urgent veterinary treatment. Witness accounts state the man became agitated and left the pound after staff questioned him about the dog’s poor condition.

One witness approached the defendant in the car park where he agreed to give her the dog. The woman immediately took the dog to a local vet who assessed the dog as being very underweight with a body score of 1/5, where 1 is emaciated and 5 is ideal.  The dog had no discernible fat and was experiencing severe muscle wastage, he had a heavy flea burden and severe areas of hair loss associated with severe thickening caused by rubbing, scratching and crusting.  These conditions would have been present one month prior to presentation.

After taking witness statements from the woman and pound staff members, the RSPCA Inspector then spoke to the man on the 13th of February, 2014. During the interview the defendant said he’d gone away for a week and returned to find the dog in that condition. He said he believed it was from a spider or insect bite. The dog was reportedly in the care of his parents while he was away. The man stated his parents told him there was something wrong with the dog. He said he took her to the pound a week after he returned.

The man said the dog’s appetite had notably declined and that he didn’t think his dog’s condition was normal, but couldn’t afford vet or medical care. He acknowledged the dog would have been in discomfort.

The RSPCA Inspector took photographs taken of the dog (by witnesses on the 17th of December, 2013) to a veterinary skin specialist for assessment. The report noted the dog to have a skin disease which was characterized by extensive hair loss with skin thickening and increased pigmentation affecting over 70% of the body surface area and would have been present for at least three months prior to presentation and more likely for six months or more.  The generalised disease and poor body condition was not consistent with an initial localised insult or trauma, including a spider bite.

Sentencing
  • Fine: $800
  • Prohibited from owning animals for two years
All Charges Made Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act

For media enquiries, please contact Jessica Conway on 0488 905 353

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Rabbit owners urged to vaccinate against Calicivirus


Owners of domestic rabbits are urged to ensure their pets are fully vaccinated against the deadly Calicivirus before 28th February 2015. The Calicivirus baits are set to be laid in late March, weather permitting.

The warning comes as many councils across Sydney prepare to release the virus in a bid to tackle the ongoing feral rabbit population in the area.

The virus is highly contagious and spread by rabbit-to-rabbit contact and by biting  insects, causing a rapid death for rabbits. “The best form of protection is a yearly vaccination,” said RSPCA NSW Chief Veterinarian Magdoline Awad. “Rabbits should also be housed in a mosquito-proof enclosure away from contact with wild rabbits,” Dr Awad said.

“The virus only affects rabbits and causes a disease known as Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease or RHD. The virus works by infecting a number of organs including the lungs, gut and liver of the rabbit. The liver infection causes acute hepatitis that can kill the rabbit within 48 hours,” Dr Award said.

There is a vaccine available from your vet to protect your pet rabbit from this virus. The vaccine is given once to rabbits over 12 weeks of age. For younger rabbits, the first vaccine requires a booster. All rabbits require yearly boosters. Contact us to get your rabbit vaccinated.

All RSPCA rabbits are vaccinated for calicivirus, desexed and microchipped prior to adoption.

Council areas to be impacted are; Hills Shire Council, Hornsby Shire Council, Hunters Hill Council, Ku-ring-gai Municipal Council, Lane Cove Council, Manly Council, Mosman Council, North Sydney Council, Parramatta Council, Pittwater Council, Ryde City Council, Warringah Council, Willoughby City Council.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Woman banned from owning animals after dog found dead

A 33-year-old woman has been fined $750 and banned from owning animals for two years after appearing in Mount Druitt Local Court on Thursday, the 19th of February, 2015 and pleading guilty to two counts failing to provide veterinary treatment to her female Great Dane dog resulting in its death.

Charges
  • Fail to provide veterinary treatment — Flea Burden (one charge)
  • Fail to provide veterinary treatment — Emaciation  (one charge) 

Key Facts
On 27th July 2014, a complaint was received by RSPCA NSW alleging that a dog was dead in a backyard in Bidwill.  On arrival, a four-year-old black and grey female Great Dane was seen laying unresponsive in the rear yard. There was no one home at the time.

The dog was noted to be in an emaciated body condition with its ribs, spine and hipbones clearly prominent.

NSW Police assisted in seizing the deceased dog and the RSPCA transported it to the RSPCA Sydney Shelter in Yagoona where a post mortem was conducted.

An RSPCA Veterinarian noted the dog weighed 21kg and had all bone prominences easily visible from a distance. Based on the Tufts Animal Care and Condition Scales for assessing body condition, where 1 is an ideal body condition and 5 is the most underweight, this dog was given a body condition score of 5. Further observations noted severe generalised muscle and fat atrophy, with the rib, bony prominences of the scapula, spine and hips easily visualised and palpated.  A large amount of flea dirt was also found alongside live fleas. It was estimated the dog had needed treatment for fleas for no less than two weeks but likely longer.

The vet assessed that the dog would have required a veterinary examination for its emaciated body condition and necessary treatment for a period of no less than 4 weeks prior to its death.

Two RSPCA Inspectors returned to the residence where the dog was found to interview the woman on the 4th August, 2014. The woman said she owned the female Great Dane for around four years and was in charge of her daily care.

The woman said she was aware that the dog needed treatment for worms and that the dog hadn't seen a vet for a year or two.

The woman said though she usually lived at the residence, she had been staying elsewhere, returning home sporadically to give her two dogs food and water.

She admitted knowing her two dogs fought over food, and the male dog dominated, leaving the Great Dane to starve, and she did nothing to intervene.

The accused last attended her home on 27th July 2014, not returning until some four days later. She failed to have anyone else check on the animals or feed them in her absence.

The woman said she last saw the dog alive on the 27th of July, stating “she was on the...she was on like the… the slender side,” describing her body condition as “Um, like her back bone a little bit was...a little bit was showing and her haunches,” and acknowledging that the dog did not look normal or healthy.

Sentencing
  • FINE: $750
  • TWO YEAR GOOD BEHAVIOUR BOND
  • ORDERED TO REHOME CURRENT DOG
  • PROHIBITED FROM OWNING, ACQUIRING OR BEING IN CHARGE OF AN ANIMAL FOR TWO YEARS
All Charges Made Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act

For media enquiries, please contact Jessica Conway on 0488 905 353.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

RSPCA NSW to be on panel investigating Greyhound racing industry

RSPCA NSW Chief Executive Officer Steve Coleman is welcoming the opportunity to be part of an independent panel to investigate allegations of live baiting within the greyhound industry in New South Wales.

It comes after the board and CEO of Greyhound Racing NSW stood down overnight, in the wake of the video footage showing the blooding of greyhounds using live rabbits, possums and piglets. 

The head of the NSW Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing Paul Newson, has been named interim CEO. Mr Newson will join Mr Coleman on the investigative panel to be headed by former High Court Justice Michael McHugh. Additional members are to be appointed in coming days.

“Our focus is on the welfare of animals.  This is a unique opportunity to go back to square one and consider all of the aspects that potentially impact on welfare including whether self-regulation is the future for this industry,” Mr Coleman said. 

Deputy Premier Troy Grant has said ‘everything is on the table’ when it comes to preventing further cases of live baiting, and restoring the integrity of the industry.

 “This is what we’ve been asking for since the footage came to light, and we are heartened that our calls have been heeded,” Mr Coleman concluded.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Happy Pancake Day



Are you participating in Pancake Day? If so, don't forget your pooch!
Here is a great Dog Pancake Recipe.

You will need:
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, melted, or vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Cooking spray
  •  2 cups sliced banana,
  • 1 cup plain yogurt

Steps:  
  1. Pre-heat a griddle or large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, butter and honey.
  3. Gently whisk in the whole wheat and all-purpose flours, baking powder and cinnamon.
  4. Spray the griddle with cooking spray. 
  5. Drop the batter, 2 tablespoons at a time, onto the greased griddle. 
  6. Cook the pancakes until bubbles begin to form and break, about 3 minutes. Press a few pieces of fruit into each pancake, then flip and cook until brown on the bottom, about 2 minutes.
  7.  Drizzle with the yogurt and top with the remaining fruit.
Don't forget to use our Shop Humane Guide when purchasing the ingredients!

Enjoy!

Monday, February 16, 2015

RSPCA investigates live baiting in Greyhound racing industry

RSPCA NSW is investigating allegations of live baiting in the Greyhound racing industry.

Last week, inspections were conducted across three properties in Sydney in conjunction with NSW Police.

The RSPCA received a complaint including video footage which showed live rabbits and a possum being used to encourage Greyhounds to chase the lure around the track. Some of these animals were subjected to extreme distress before eventually being caught and mauled.

“It is deeply troubling that live baiting, or blooding, is still seen as a legitimate training tactic in some Greyhound circles,” said RSPCA NSW CEO Steve Coleman.

“RSPCA NSW received the complaint and confronting footage on 2nd February, 2015 prompting an immediate investigation which resulted in the simultaneous inspections at two greyhound training facilities and one residence in western Sydney last Wednesday. Our Investigations are continuing,” said RSPCA NSW Chief Inspector David OShannessy.

The footage and ABC’s Four Corners investigation implicates trainers in three states, indicating this illegal practice is present within the industry.

“We do have concerns about the Greyhound industry’s self-regulation model, and perhaps it is time to revisit this method of governance,” said Mr Coleman.

“The use of live rabbits or any animal for training in the Greyhound industry is illegal with fines of up to $110,000 for a corporation and $22,000 and/or two years imprisonment for an individual,” Mr Coleman concluded.

RSPCA NSW is continuing its investigations into this matter and urges the community to report any animal cruelty concerns via www.rspcansw.org.au or 1300 CRUELTY. 

Friday, February 13, 2015

Find your Purr-fect Match this Valentine's Day

Are you looking for love?

The Petbarn Foundation is hosting their national Pet Dating event this Valentine's Day, Saturday 14th February.

Potential adopters can choose to go on a mini-date with a number of cuddly animals.

The pets available for adoption will vary from store to store, and will range from playful kittens to senior cats, puppies, dogs or even rabbits. There will be no shortage of loving animals all looking for a forever home.


The aim of the event is to raise awareness of the importance of pet adoption and encourage everyone to think to consider adopt first when adding a furry friend to the family.

Petbarn stores across the country have partnered with a number of local animal shelters including the RSPCA, to offer pet adoptions.

You could find your purr-fect match this Valentine’s Day, simply by visiting your local Petbarn store, an RSPCA shelter or you can view our animals currently available at www.adoptapet.com.au

Valentine's Day: A Warning for Cat Owners

Valentine’s Day can be a deadly affair for cats
RSPCA NSW is reminding romantics that popular Valentine’s Day flowers can have deadly consequences for cats.

“Lilies are exceedingly toxic and should be avoided at all cost,” said Dr Magdoline Awad, RSPCA NSW Chief Veterinarian.

“All parts of the lily are toxic, even a cat licking a small amount of pollen off their coat or chewing on a leaf can turn fatal,” Dr Awad said.

A few hours after ingesting the poisonous plant, cats may become sick and lethargic. After 24 hours, symptoms usually ease, but acute kidney failure develops within 2-3 days. If untreated, cats can die within 3-7 days.

Indoor cats and kittens are especially drawn to flowers and plants, as they are a form of environmental enrichment. As they investigate the plant, it’s common for them to play with and sometimes chew parts of it — ingesting possible toxins. Pet owners should instead provide safe and appropriate enrichment such as catnip and cat grass as well as interactive toys for their cats.

If a pet owner suspects that their cat has ingested any part of the lily plant, they should take their cat to a vet immediately. “Prevention is by far better than the cure,” Dr Awad advised.

Other flowers that may cause vomiting, loss of appetite and depression include:
  • Tulips
  • Carnations
  • Daffodils
  • Holly    
  • Mistletoe
  • Ivy
  • Bergonias          
  • Azalea
  • Iris
  • Bird of paradise
  • Baby’s Breath

Friday, February 6, 2015

Dora beats the odds


Dora the goat was the victim of a horrific hunting arrow attack and her rescue was made possible by the quick response of our RSPCA Inspectors who were on the scene as soon as Dora’s owner alerted them to her plight.

Dora was rushed to the RSPCA Sydney Vet Hospital by our Inspectors and taken into surgery, but there was one pressing problem. We suspected that Dora might be pregnant. So before anything could be done to save the mum, we needed to check on the kid... or as we were soon to find out... two kids. Dora was carrying twins and thankfully, they both had heartbeats.

This story’s happy ending was made possible because you give so that we can act. Without your generosity and continued support, Dora’s plight may have been quite different. Your commitment to the cause and generous support of our services means that we are able to fight for animals like Dora every day. Please support our fight to always be there for animals in need.



Monday, February 2, 2015

RSPCA Cattery at Capacity

Bob, just one of the many kittens looking for a new home

RSPCA NSW is treating more cats with cat flu than ever before, with the Sydney and Hunter shelters at capacity with dozens of recovered felines needing homes right now.

“Cat flu is one of the most misunderstood illnesses, with many potential owners instantly dismissing an adoption animal once they hear it has been sick,” said RSPCA NSW Chief Veterinarian Magdoline Awad.

“In reality, cat flu is much like the human flu — it makes you sniffly, sneezy, tired and off your food.  But with rest, TLC and occasionally the need for some medication it clears up,” she said.

The flu can be passed on through sneezing and mucous. It is also possible for kittens to be exposed to the virus prior to or soon after birth.

Jupiter
As the RSPCA Sydney Shelter continues to undergo major renovations the capacity to nurse these cats back to full health has improved, but following a particularly heavy cat breeding season space is at a premium.

“It’s like a bug in a childcare centre, when one child comes in sick others invariably pick it up as well. The same applies with cat flu, an overwhelming population of kittens and young cats, with no previous vaccinations come into a new environment with all the added stresses. Whilst we vaccinate all animals on arrival, some still succumb to cat flu — albeit a milder form of the disease,” said Dr Awad.

Molly
When rehoming these cats, RSPCA NSW has a duty of care to let people know they have been treated for flu, as there is a small chance it could be contagious to other cats already in the home. “Many owned cats in the home are vaccinated, in good health and living in a less stressful environment than a shelter, so the likelihood of catching the flu is minimal and if they do, it is often very mild,” Dr Awad said.

Like people, cats may relapse in times of stress or when they are affected by another illness.

“One of the best things to do for a newly recovered kitten is get it into a home as soon as possible,” Dr Awad said. “Once there, they can start socialising with people, settle in to the home where the environment is less stressful, feel calmer, rest and rejuvenate to stay healthy and happy.” 

Visit www.adoptapet.com.au to view all of the cats and kittens currently available for adoption.


Friday, January 30, 2015

Animals from A to Zany

Kids have fun while learning about animals!

Does your child enjoy learning FUN facts about animals or entering competitions with awesome prizes? Our Animania Magazine may just be the perfect gift for the young animal lover!

RSPCA’S Animania Magazine is loaded with great animal facts, cool posters, and top pet care tips from our staff and veterinarians. There are loads of awesome prizes to win – and your child could be featured in the next issue, simply send in their letters and drawings to receive a special gift. 

Kids Animania Magazine includes: 
  • Educational articles about a wide range of animals
  • Pet care tips and advice
  • Competitions and giveaways
  • Puzzles and games
  • Breed features
  •  Behind the scenes at the RSPCA

Signup your child today!
Visit our website to download a subscription form or call (02) 9770 7583 to ensure your child receives the next issue.
You can also subscribe to Animania Magazine through iSubscribe or Magshop.

All proceeds from Animania go towards the work of the RSPCA. 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Three top tips to keep your pet safe this Australia Day

Not all celebrations are fun for our pets

Australia Day is fast becoming a national day of beach cricket, picnics in the park, and backyard BBQ’s with family and friends. Our celebrations however, may not be so much fun for our pets.

Here are our three top tips to help keep your pet safe this Australia Day long weekend:
  • If hosting a backyard BBQ, make sure your pets aren’t fed food scraps. Don’t forget to remove the BBQ oil tray too as it is an extremely unhealthy doggy delight that can lead to pancreatitis if consumed in large amounts.
  • The loud noise of fireworks can frighten our pets! If your pet is going to be home alone during the fireworks, ensure they are in a safe place, ideally indoors where they cannot escape or hurt themselves. For pets with high levels of anxiety, it is recommended you stay at home, arrange a friend or pet-sitter, or consider speaking to your vet about treatment options.
Why not use the extra day to welcome a new family member. Visit www.adoptapet.com.au to view our animals currently looking for their new home. Our shelters will be open this weekend but closed for adoptions on Monday. If you have an emergency, you can still contact us on 02 9770 7555.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Just six minutes. That’s all it takes.


As New South Wales experiences hot summer heat, now is the time to make the pledge to never leave your mate behind. Every year, our Inspectors receive hundreds of calls to rescue dogs and other animals left in hot cars. Even if your car is parked in the shade, or the windows are left down, the temperature in your car can rise to dangerous levels and can rapidly reach more than double the outside temperature even on mild days.

Spot the signs of heat stress
Animals suffering from heat stress may pant, drool and become restless. In just minutes, they can become weak and the colour of their gums may change; they may also start to stagger and experience vomiting, diarrhoea or seizures. It can take just minutes for your pet to die from heat stress.


Causing animals to suffer in any way is a criminal offence. If your dog suffers as a result of being left in a car, you could be fined or spend time in jail.

If you see an animal suffering in a hot car, contact your local police or our Inspectors on 02 9770 7555.

For more information download our Heatstroke Prevention Factsheet or
watch our YouTube clip and learn how quickly temperatures can rise in a parked car.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Get the kids out of the house these School Holidays!


Need to get the kids out of the house these school holidays? Does your child have an interest in animal welfare or want to learn more about animals?  Our School Holiday Program could be the answer, and is an opportunity for kids and teens to spend either a half or full day at our Sydney or Hunter Shelter.

Sessions are held for participants aged 8-11, 12-14 and 15-17 years old. Each group will have a chance to get up close and personal with many of our shelter animals, including dogs, cats, rabbits, ducks, sheep and more!

There are five different information sessions your child can choose from:
  • Animal Care: Learn what it means to be a responsible pet owner by caring for the animals living at the RSPCA Shelter
  • Animal Health: Come meet our RSPCA Veterinarians and Vet Nurses and learn how to keep our animals happy and healthy
  • Animal Enrichment: Learn the tips and tricks from RSPCA Animal Attendants on how to keep our animals happy
  • Animal Careers (15-17 years old): If you've decided that you want to work with animals then this session will show you some of the possibilities that exist within RSPCA NSW to pursue your passion.
  • Animal Rescue: Come meet our animal police, the RSPCA Inspectors, who dedicate their time to rescue animals in need.

If your child would like to spend their school holidays making some new furry friends, book a course today! Places are limited, so book now to avoid disappointment.

To book, or for more information on each of the courses click here. 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Avoid dog attacks: Learn body language

RSPCA NSW School Holiday Program teaches body language  

As school holidays approach RSPCA NSW is imploring parents to talk to their children about safety around dogs. The majority of dog attack victims are children, and with more kids out and about over the summer the risk increases.

“Any dog can become reactive to a situation, and the outcome can be tragic,” said Matt French, RSPCA NSW Community Development Manager. “The key thing is for children to learn to recognise the warning signs and act appropriately.”

Educating children in dog behaviour and bite prevention is one of the key messages in RSPCA NSW’s School Holiday Program. It’s one of a number of animal issues to be addressed, with five different sessions on offer.

“Ways to keep dogs happy and mentally engaged in their backyard is another focal point, as it’s the best way to lessen nuisance barking as well as reduce escaping and destructive behaviours,” Mr French said.

It’s not all about dogs though; children will also learn about cats, birds, pocket pets (like rabbits and guinea pigs) and some livestock.

“We’ll cover how your cat can live longer by staying indoors and the lifelong benefits of mental stimulation. We’ll learn how to search your dog for ticks ways to keep them cool over the hot summer,” Mr French concluded.

The sessions are for children aged between 8 and 17, with half and whole day options available. For more information visit our website.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Seven New Year Resolution Ideas for your Pet

May 2015 be a great year for your pet

Whilst most of us are busy making resolutions to kick off 2015, have you thought about making 2015 the best for your pet too? Make the New Year the best year for your pet by making resolutions to make them healthier and happier in 2015.

How to make 2015 better for your pet

  • Fitness: If you are planning to lose weight this year, why not include your pet too! Extra weight on your pet can lead to problems such as joint issues and heart disease. Why not take your dog for regular walks, or perhaps a swim - It not only keeps their body fit but also keeps their mind relaxed too!
  • Mental stimulation: Games or toys that ensure some mental work from your pet will benefit their overall health and prevent boredom. Ask your vet about suitable toys that are best suited to develop and engage your pet’s mind. Exercise wheels are a great option for pet mice, and cats love to chase and interact with their toys. 
  • Medical check list: Make a check list for your pet’s annual check-up – including when they are due for worming and vaccinations, and mark it on the calendar! If you have not planned desexing your cat or dog, then doing it this year will help keep your pet healthy. Desexing your pet reduces the chances of cancers and prostrate diseases. It also reduces the problems of urine marking, roaming around and excessive barking and mewing tendencies in dogs and cats.

  • Diet: Ask your vet about changing your pet’s food habits. You can go slowly on introducing new items into their meals - but cutting down on table scraps, sweets and other weight gaining items should be done immediately. Giving solid food can help prevent plaque that otherwise may be formed with wet food. Your rabbit or guinea pig will love darker, leafy vegetables added to their diet.
    RSPCA NSW Vet Hospitals recommend HIll's Science Diet for dogs and cats.

  • Behaviour: Some of your pet’s behavioural problems like urinating in the house or anti-social behaviour are always a cause of concern. This year, consider getting advice from an RSPCA Vet Hospital or a professional trainer to help overcome some of those undesired behaviours.
  • Quality time: Nothing compares to the love and devotion you can experience with your pet! This year, aim to spend more quality time with your pet. They’ll thank you for it!
  • Check those details: The New Year provides a perfect opportunity to check your pet’s details! If you have changed your contact details, make sure you update your pet’s microchip and registrations details. It will be the best way to reunite you with your pet should they become lost!
All this plus lots of love and care are enough to make your pet healthier and happier in 2015.