ANIMAL cruelty across the region rose by more than a quarter last year, according to the RSPCA.
The animal charity said there were 684 reports of intentional harm against animals made to it last year in the West Midlands, compared to 537 in 2021 – an increase of 27 per cent.
The charity said the number of reports made nationally to its cruelty line about intentional harm to animals – including beatings, mutilations such as ear cropping, poisonings and even killings – has increased by 14 per cent, with 12,582 reported last year compared to 11,012 reports in 2021.
As a result, the animal charity is bracing for one of its busiest summers this year as it expects another summer of suffering, with more people reporting cruelty to animals from July to September.
The charity has launched its Cancel Out Cruelty campaign, to raise funds to help its frontline rescue teams continue to save animals from cruelty and abuse and to raise awareness about how to stop cruelty to animals for good.
The national figures, released by the RSPCA, show the number of beatings reported to the RSPCA in 2022 peaked in August, when 1,081 reports were received – a staggering 35 a day and the number of animals killed in ‘suspicious circumstances’ increased in 2022 by 15 per cent from by 2021 (891 in 2022, compared to 775 in 2021).
John Grant, RSPCA chief inspector for the West Midlands, said: “Sadly the number of cruelty incidents in the West Midlands are also too high.
“It is heartbreaking that we are seeing figures which show animal cruelty is, very sadly, on the rise.
“While we don’t know for certain why there has been an increase in reports of cruelty, the cost of living crisis and the post-pandemic world we live in has created an animal welfare crisis with more people getting pets with potentially less time and money to care for them.
“Each year, these reports of cruelty reach its terrible annual peak in the summer months – when nationally we receive a report of an animal being beaten on average every hour of every day.
“The cost-of-living crisis also means the cost of rescuing animals is at an all-time high and our vital services are stretched to the limit.”
The charity said it is not known why reports of animal cruelty peak in the summer months although factors like animal abuse being more visible as people are outdoors more, could be one factor.
John added: “Together, we believe we can and will cancel out cruelty to animals by replacing violence with kindness. We are urging people to donate to our Cancel Out Cruelty campaign,every donation will help animals.”
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