Animal abandonment: frustration aired over lack of prosecutions

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The chairman of a local charity for abandoned dogs has expressed his frustration at the lack of people being prosecuted for animal abandonment in Angus.

Ian Robb of help for Abandoned Animals in Arbroath commented after being unable to bring to justice the person responsible for dumping a greyhound/whippet cross in Forfar last year.

Angel was dumped in the Orchardbank area of the town in August. As she was lactating, Ian suspected she had recently given birth but was unable to trace the pups.

“I’ve had a look and in Glasgow and Edinburgh, prosecution rates for abandonment are rising but this doesn’t seem to be happening in Angus.”

He also expressed his disappointment that yet again people had ignored festive pleas not to buy puppies as Christmas presents.

The charity has taken in three young dogs since Christmas and Ian suspects that they may have been abandoned after their owners realised how much hard work a puppy entails.

“It’s the same occurrence every year,” he said.

“People get a dog for Christmas, spend a few days playing with it but then realise they don’t want to put up with it messing up their home.

“Abandoning pups in this cold weather is sad but at least they are not being left out in a cardboard box; people are taking them to police stations or sanctuaries and saying they have found them abandoned.”

Two of the dogs have since been rehomed, however Ian still has a Jack Russell/Whippet type cross named Bella.

Ian received some comfort from figures which show the number of animals abandoned in Angus fell by 20% in the last year.

This could be attributed in part to new legislation which means that causing unnecessary suffering to an animal now carries the threat of a year in prison, a £20,000 fine or both. Those found guilty can also be banned from keeping animals for life.