The donkey welfare disaster in Ireland is deepening, in keeping with a charity primarily based in Co Cork.
Donkey Sanctuary Ireland mentioned that instances of poor donkey welfare are overwhelming equine charities.
Up to the top of October this yr, the Donkey Sanctuary gave assist and recommendation on 1,153 events for donkeys in the neighborhood, and rehomed 180 donkeys.
It mentioned that the quantity of donkeys requiring rescue, rehoming, and sanctuary care has reached “unsustainable and unmanageable levels”.
This has been brought on by a “perfect storm” of continual, long-term irresponsible breeding, a scarcity of schooling and consciousness, and human hardships triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Laura Foster, Donkey Sanctuary Ireland’s nation supervisor, mentioned the issue must be tackled within the long-term, with poor donkey welfare being a long-standing and rising difficulty in Ireland.
Between 2018 and 2020, studies of poor donkey welfare to the Donkey Sanctuary by members of the general public rose 44% – from 373 per yr to 536 per yr – and phone recommendation calls rose 150%, from 641 to 1,601.
The charity has greater than 1,800 donkeys in its care and the charity’s sanctuary services have been full for a few years.
However, groups work in communities throughout Ireland to seek out new properties for donkeys and supply transport, veterinary, and welfare companies.
The charity is interesting for public assist because it heads into winter.
“The factors driving Ireland’s donkey welfare problems are numerous and difficult to resolve,” mentioned Ms Foster.
“Of course, we will continue to care for thousands of donkeys every year, but working in crisis mode is unacceptable and unsustainable.
“Put simply, we need to tackle this problem in the long-term through better owner education, a national clamp-down on breeding, and more enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act in cases of abuse and neglect.”
Ms Foster mentioned the charity has a three-part message to the general public.
“For donkeys in crisis: We encourage anyone who witnesses a donkey suffering or in poor health, in the first instance, to contact the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine’s national helpline, the ISPCA’s national cruelty helpline, local authority, or local Garda station.
“For donkey owners: We are appealing to donkey owners to contact us for information and support accessing critical donkey welfare services such as farriery and dentistry, as well as advice on castration and other veterinary services. Our welfare team can be contacted on 022 49013, or submit an enquiry via our website: thedonkeysanctuary.ie.
“For would-be donkey owners: Please contact our welfare team, or one of our equine charity partners, if you are interested in acquiring donkeys, to find out more about our rehoming scheme, and before you contact a breeder or go down the private ownership route.
“Our team are experts in all aspects of donkey health and welfare, and can offer anyone advice and assistance on how to be responsible donkey owners.” Ms Foster added that the charity’s welfare groups are “bracing themselves for an extremely challenging winter”.
“Now more than ever, we welcome any donations from members of the public that will enable us to continue tackling poor donkey welfare across Ireland.”