Shropshire Star

Shropshire dog rescue charity forced to turn animals away in cash squeeze

A greyhound rescue charity based in Shropshire says it is having to turn seven to 10 dogs away every day as people find they can no longer afford to look after them.

A Hector's Greyhound Rescue winter walk at Chirk Castle

Hector's Greyhound Rescue says its kennels and foster homes are completely full, with some foster families taking on more than one animal as pleas for help soar.

The Oswestry-based charity says donations to help it care for the rescue dogs have also fallen as people tighten their belts.

Hayley Bradley, who launched the charity in 2002, said she has never known so many requests to rehome the dogs and says some families are having to take the dreadful decision to have them put down.

The charity was set up to help rehome retired racing greyhounds and expanded to take in other sighthounds such as lurchers and whippets.

David Field with William and Thomas Field, and Angus the dog at a recent winter walk organised by Hector's Greyhound Rescue

Hayley said: "Money is tight everywhere and many dog owners can no longer afford to keep their pets.

"We are full and we have been turning down seven to 10 dogs a day, more than I can ever remember.

"Over Christmas we were able to take away a greyhound whose owner has a spinal injury and three more, including one with seizures and one with a broken foot.

"Eventually when there really was 'no room at the inn' I had to tell an owner who was sleeping in his car we had nowhere to accommodate his dog.

"When I put the phone down I put my head in my hands and sobbed."

Kim Byers with Sam the dog at a recent winter walk organised by Hector's Greyhound Rescue

"For some owners the only alternative is a local authority pound and for some that means euthanasia after seven days."

The charity is experiencing financial shortfalls itself as the cost of living crisis means those who usually support it may not give as much.

It holds regular fundraisers such as the dog walk around Chirk Castle's estate last weekend.

A recent winter walk organised by Hector's Greyhound Rescue

It says that there are many ways to help, from donating funding and food or old bedding to volunteering.

Hayley said: "Whether people can collect and transport dogs or help us with our admin there are plenty of roles. If people can put collection boxes in their places of work that would really help.

"The money from those collection boxes goes straight to vaccinations etc."

More information is available on the charity's website