Shropshire Star

'People can't give up jobs, so they give up their dogs': Kennels face influx of lockdown pups

Rescue kennels will be feeling the aftershocks of Covid for many years to come, a Shropshire dog rescue centre has warned.

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Marty Burrell and Smokey

The combination of lockdown puppies and the cost of living crisis have led to an increase in abandoned dogs, says Marty Burrell of Hilbrae Rescue Kennels in Cold Hatton, near Telford.

Marty has been helping to rescue the county's strays for 33 years, but over the last couple of years, the centre has been bursting full of dogs that have been given up by their owners.

She says the lasting impact of Covid, the cost of living crisis, and the lack of microchipping have meant an unprecedented influx of dogs in their care.

Marty Burrell, right, and Sophie Hounsell with Bonnie and Jack

"We have empty kennels for a day or two, but they soon get filled," said Marty.

"As soon as we rehome one, we've got a list of people waiting to bring another in. In that respect, we don't have any empty kennels."

In January this year, the RSPCA reported it had seen an alarming 73 per cent increase in young dogs being abandoned.

The animal welfare charity believed a decline in puppy sales following the surge in people buying dogs during lockdown, was causing breeders to dump puppies that no one wants to buy.