Hundreds of animal neglect, cruelty calls across region
A MOTHER who left her two-year-old dog in the dirt under her Goomeri home while she went to visit her friend in Bundaberg for six days was just one of more than 280 cruelty and neglect complaints made to the RSPCA across the region in the past 12 months.
The shocking figures were released by the animal protection agency this week, showing that Kingaroy alone had close to 100 reports of animal cruelty recorded in 2019.
It was number 17 on the list of Queensland postcodes with the most animal cruelty complaints.
Nanango was the second worst in the region with 38 complaints, followed by Murgon, which had 19 and Blackbutt, which had 17, and Wondai, which had 15.
RSPCA Queensland spokesman Michael Beatty said the organisation had received nearly 800 more complaints about cruelty and neglect in 2019 as it did in the previous year.
In 2019, 18,692 complaints were registered compared to 17,862 in 2019.
“Obviously it’s not good news,” Mr Beatty said.
“You want the numbers to be decreasing not rising.
“Our inspectors are already operating under an enormous workload.”
The complaints concerned such issues as animals with insufficient food and water, poor living conditions, animals being tethered and not receiving exercise, abandonment, injuries not being treated and animals looking in poor condition.
There were also nearly a thousand calls regarding heat stress - either the animal was left in a hot car or it couldn’t reach shade and water in the yard.
In November, Casey May Lynch pleaded guilty to breaching the duty of care for an animal in Murgon Magistrates Court.
Lynch, who admitted to leaving her dog under the house in Goomeri while she went to Bundaberg for six days, told police she had never taken her dog, Rocky, to the vet in the two years she had owned him and couldn’t remember the last time she took him for a walk.
Rocky, a mixed breed male dog, was found by police whimpering and sitting in the dirt with a dry water and food bowl alongside a filthy towel.
Police could see the dog’s rib cage and rear hip bones protruding, showing he was malnourished.
Lynch was fined $750 and is prevented from owning a dog for two years.
The dog was taken to Gympie RSPCA for treatment and Lynch was ordered to pay $267 in vet bills.
No conviction was recorded due to her youth and lack of history.
RSPCA animal ambulance officers also had a busy year, with 29,865 calls coming into the command centre.
“In areas where we don’t have an ambulance we contact the nearest group that can assist,” Mr Beatty said.
“That can be the police, DAFF officers, or in the case of wildlife, a wildlife rescue group or carer.”