Now that we are a registered charity we realised that we we now have the ability to help many more animals in need. While researching the the animal welfare organisations in our area and comparing it to the policies of local regional councils we realised that there is a vast space of need for animal welfare and a significant gap of resources available. Council rangers have commented that 70 to 80% of dogs picked up by rangers are never claimed by their owners and the other 30% are surrendered.
Unfortunately pound facilities are located in the largest regional town that supports a cluster of smaller towns within the WA wheatbelt area. this turns out to look like 8 regional clusters, with 8 towns per cluster with only one pound facility provided for each cluster.Council animal welfare policies are short with information for locals stating:
If your dog or cat is impounded, fees will be payable to the Shire before release of the animal. Any dogs impounded for more than 72 hours may be put down or rehomed.
We found that these fees required to release the animal can include the following items
- registration of the animal(sometimes double the amount if the animal is not desexed)
- if the animal is not microchipped then the owner has to prepay for microchipping and take the receipt to the pound
- they have to pay a fine for being impounded
- pay a daily rate to cover food and care costs
It is easy to see how these requirements can be challenging for some people for a variety of reasons, especially financially.
With only one other organisation trying to save these animals from the kill list in the entire WA wheatbelt region there would be thousands of animals killed unnecessarily every year.
Interestingly, the pound is also where stray cattle are taken. They are also bound by the 72 hour rule.
We aim to do our part to provide a temporary home to these animals while we find a suitable forever home for them.
We will be making an application with the Wandering Shire to build a kennel facility that will be used solely for non for profit sheltering of animals and make ourselves available as their overflow from the pound to help reduce the kill list numbers. Fortunately, we have 100 acres and a large shed close to the house and there is always someone at home to provide the care these animals need.
We will find new homes and temporary foster care by networking with other animal welfare groups, animal lovers, and registration with PetRescue. We hope to provide volunteering opportunities to people in our local area who are passionate about animal welfare, part of a community group such as Men’s Shed, CWA, Guides and disability work experience organisations. We will also connect with local students from the agricultural college, TAFE and veterinary courses to collaborate in skill exchange and care for the animals.