SADLY IT is not unusual for walkers in rural areas to find dumped dogs.
Owners of puppies that were cute on birthday or Christmas morning quickly grow big. After a couple of messes on the carpet and cushions bitten to shreds the novelty value can wear off for some. Add in feeding costs, having to walk it, vet bills and some cold hearted owners drive to a remote location and dump the dog. It is hard for animal lovers to understand this but that is where Limerick Animal Welfare (LAW) step in.
In recent days walkers found a Labrador in Aherlow. Again not unusual but in this instance they also left behind dog food, the pet’s bowl and bed. While LAW already have two offers for this dog they have many more “looking for their forever home.”
Sanctuary manager of the Kilfinane-based charity, Marie Quirke, says they have over 200 animals - dogs, cats, rabbits, fowl, goats, pigs, horses and donkeys.
“Adopting a dog rather then buying will save many from being put to sleep. Over breeding will displace those animals who are abandoned and waiting in pounds and rescue centres all over Ireland. We would urge you to please rescue an animal who needs a home. Puppy farming is still widespread and many of these people are only interested in making fast money.
“When you rescue and give a home to an animal from any well established rescue centre you will receive a fully vaccinated, wormed, flea treated and neutered animal. A vaccination cert and food sample pack will be given to you on the day of collection and if you have any queries, problems or just want to chat about the animal’s progress we are available on 063 91110,” said Mrs Quirke.
While the majority will fit right in some need a little more care and attention. But that is what makes it more rewarding.
Take Lola, a German Shepherd, pictured below.
“She has all the previous signs of living in a back yard without any socialisation with humans. Her previous owners have not given her any reason to trust people. Please do not contact us unless you can totally commit to this girl, no children please. You will need to have another very social dog for Lola to learn from and a human who can give many months of patience guidance and gentle training to bring Lola out of herself. A fully enclosed garden is needed,” said Mrs Quirke.
LAW, which has a no-kill policy, helps as many animals as they can. They have an emergency number 087 6371044 - manned 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for accident and emergency cases.
“Many cases of stray healthy dogs are reported to us and with the help of the public and our Facebook page most are returned to their owners. We again appeal to owners to please put an identity tag on your animal or for €25 at any vet you can microchip them and register them in your name. This will ensure that when they are found they can be swiftly returned to you,” said Mrs Quirke.
Phase 2 of the sanctuary is due to begin in February - rehoming centre, reception, office and veterinary room. Currently all dogs are housed in the isolation unit which is not ideal.
“The building will require €500,000 to completely finish but for phase two we still need to raise €200,000,” she said.
For more on how to donate - privately or corporate, pet adoption or to volunteer, log on to limerickanimalwelfare.ie or ring 063 91110.