MORNINGTON Peninsula ranked sixth out of Victoria’s 79 local council areas for animal cruelty, according to a list of hotspots released by RSPCA Victoria.
Of the 11,840 cruelty reports across the state in 2015-16, 366 were involved the welfare of animals on the peninsula.
RSPCA Victoria CEO Dr Liz Walker said that geographic analysis of cruelty reporting data will support efforts to focus on the areas that need it most.
“Our vision is ending cruelty to all animals – and we know that prevention is the key to ending cruelty,” she said. “Over the next 12 months we will be using this data to help identify areas that would benefit most from community education and support.”
Welfare concerns for dogs, cats and horses continued to make up most issues reported to the RSPCA.
Of the 366 reports received from the peninsula, 157 related to dogs (six to puppies); 21 to cats (nine to kittens); and 108 to horses.
Of the issues reported on the peninsula 103 related to hygiene, grooming and housing conditions; 117 concerned underweight animals; 106 involved sick and injured animals not receiving vet treatment; 68 concerned animals with insufficient food, 59 with insufficient water and 44 with insufficient shelter; 51 concerned abandoned animals, and 33 were about animals being beaten or wounded.
“Even one cruelty issue is one too many, yet the number of reports we receive is steadily increasing every year,” Dr Walker said.
“We know that the community is becoming more concerned about animal welfare, which may be part of the reason for the continued rise in reports.
“What is particularly disturbing is the fact that many of the issues reported to us involve very basic animal welfare matters, such the way animals are being housed and fed.”
Fifteen council areas received more than 300 animal cruelty reports last financial year, making up almost half of the total reports. Casey Council received 566 complaints; Geelong 554, Melbourne 479, Yarra Ranges 460, Bendigo 369, Mornington Peninsula 366, Hume 362 and Frankston 359.
First published in the Mornington News – 6 September 2016