To keep you up-to-date on how Coronavirus is effecting us and other local rescue centres, here’s our latest press release…
Whilst we are all aware of the physical, mental and financial effect of Coronavirus on humans, the consequences for dogs, cats and those that look after them can easily be overlooked.
Local animal rescue centres are fighting for survival whilst the demand is greater than ever. Sarah Johnson, Centre Manager, Teckels Animal Rescue, states ‘most small rescue centres survive hand to mouth, so something as massive as Coronavirus, which is having such a huge impact, will I’m sure result in some rescue centres simply not surviving.
Rescue centres have lost all income sources including events, fundraising and adoption fees, plus those with charity shops have had to close them.
The income from our boarding kennel and cattery business covers over ½ of our rescue centre costs. However, we have lost 99% of our clients as we are only able to accept animals belonging to key workers. With Easter and the lead up to summer being our busiest boarding periods, this couldn’t have hit us at a worse time. Some clients have been incredibly kind and donated their boarding fees but it’s just a tiny amount compared to what we usually receive.’
Whilst crucially important, lack of funding is just one area where Coronavirus has had a major impact on animal rescue centres. ‘It’s heart-breaking but, we’ve needed to furlough 75% of our staff. Each one is devastated – they just want to be here helping’ says Sarah ‘we’ve split the remaining staff into 2 teams, operating alternative weeks on a 7 days off – 7 days on rota, sleeping on site. This means we cut travel time down to a minimum and ensures there are always staff on site, even if one team needs to self-isolate. We’ve also needed to cancel all our volunteer support which we rely on for day to day running of the centre.’
And of course, there’s the impact on animals – with both adoption and fostering services on hold animals that are already in rescue centres are unable to leave. Whilst the animals requiring places is increasing ‘I’ve had various calls this week alone’ says Sarah ‘people needing to surrender their pets due to illness, finances, and issues relating to lock down such as dogs struggling in the house with children 24/7 and households with multiple cats being shut in together and now fighting. We anticipate that the number of abandoned animals will only increase during and in the aftermath of self-isolation.
Kitten season is just around the corner – last year Teckels alone we looked after over 60 kittens, will this mean that rescue centres will be unable to help?.’
Supporters have always been generous in donations, food and bedding, but due to social distancing and travel restrictions even these are currently unable to be received by rescue centres. Which means public generosity through financial donations, may well be the only way that our local rescue centres will survive.
If you’d like to help us continue our work please click here to donate – even a small amount will help make a difference.
Thank you from all at Teckels x