Tweed pound overflows with record number of dumped pets
ZENA is a loyal 10-year-old German shepherd cross, while staffie pals Panda and Phoenix are fun home-bodies who love to cuddle up on the couch.
But sadly these cute hounds, currently in the care of Friends of the Pound foster carers, have a reduced chance of finding a loving new home due to the number of pets that have been dumped locally this month.
Surrenders of pets in the shire tripled in the first week of January this year compared to any other year.
Friends of the Pound Dog co-ordinator Pam Price said she was shocked that January 2015 was even worse than Christmas, a time when traditionally the number of dumped pets spiked.
"It's disappointing people don't think ahead when they buy an animal, they think short-term," Ms Price said.
"In the case of a puppy it's a 15 year-long commitment and people just don't seem to want to make that commitment to animals any more."
She blamed shopping website Gum Tree, where you can get free unwanted animals, for diminishing the value of pets and said owners too lazy to update their dog's microchips also contributed to the problem.
Nick Tzannes, team leader compliance from the Tweed Shire Council, said the cost for lifetime microchipping started at $20 for a desexed animal, and it was free to update the pet's details from then on.
Mr Tzannes said that as a result of the January influx, the council's facility was also at "full capacity" with 12 cats and 20 dogs, a mix of surrendered and lost pets.
"Under the Companion Animal Act there is a limited amount of time the pound can keep an animal without correct microchip details if that animal fails a health or temperament test," he said.
Visit friendsofthepound.com or phone 07 5524 8590 to adopt or see how you can help Tweed's abandoned animals.