I think an animal is being mistreated, what should I do?

If you have concerns about an animal, you should always call us. All calls are completely confidential. We will need a description of the animal being mistreated, any details of the person involved, and the full address of the property where the animal is located. The sooner the report is made the better. We will ask for your contact name and number, and if possible, let you know the outcome. If you are unsure about reporting something, please just call and talk to us.

What happens when I report a case of abuse?

An SPCA Animal Welfare Inspector is given the details of the complaint and dispatched to the address to follow up. Because of the volume of calls we receive, we prioritise cases so those most in need are followed up first. All details of who reported the situation are kept completely confidential.

What if I can no longer look after my animals?

SPCA Marlborough's role in the community is to care for sick, injured, abandoned and abused animals - not 'owned' healthy pets. It is your responsibility to try and rehome your pet if you are no longer able to care for it. If we are not at capacity, we may allow you to surrender the animal to us for rehoming however, there is a surrender fee and the animal must pass a thorough health and temperament test before being eligible for adoption. As mentioned, this is only on a case by case basis, dependent upon our capabilities at the time of your call. The SPCA prefers not to give out any information on the outcome for that animal after the animal is surrendered. Please click here for advice on rehoming your pet.

What is a stray animal?

If an animal is brought into the SPCA and we do not know who the owner is, that animal is classified as a ‘stray’. All animals that are brought into the SPCA are scanned for a microchip. If an animal is microchipped we can then contact the owner and return the animal. Please note: We do not accept stray dogs - these are the responsibility of CCC Animal Control.

What happens when I bring in a stray animal?

Under the Animal Welfare Act, all stray animals, (excluding dogs) must stay at SPCA Marlborough for 7-8 full days before we can assess them for adoption. This means that if a lost animal is brought in, the owners have a chance to reclaim them. If the animal is in pain during this time we will seek medical care and treatment to stop them suffering. Following the hold period all animals will undergo a temperament and health check. All of our cats, dogs, kittens and puppies are then  desexed and mircochipped, ready for adoption. If you are concerned about a missing pet, visit our official Lost and Found website www.petsonthenet.co.nz.

What happens if I bring a wild cat into the SPCA?

All of the animals that come to the SPCA are health and temperament assessed. We need to be sure that an animal is healthy and will not hurt anyone once it has been re-homed. A wild cat that is confined suffers a great deal of stress and can seriously injure itself or a staff member. If a cat cannot be handled then we have to make the difficult decision to euthanise.

Does SPCA Canterbury put down healthy animals?

At SPCA Marlborough we work hard to ensure that all healthy animals in our care are offered the chance to be placed into loving 'forever' homes. We operate a 'no time limit' policy for all animals available for adoption, and are committed to caring for them until they find new homes.

Does SPCA Canterbury have an onsite vet?

No we do not, however - we work closely with Hornby Vet Clinic and many other Canterbury vets. Please call us if you would like to know who is your nearest vet.

What is microchipping?

A microchip is an identifying integrated circuit inserted under an animal’s skin. It is a simple and painless procedure. Once an animal is microchipped they are then put on the national register. A special scanner can read the chip number, and we can then locate the owner on the register.

How do I microchip my animal?

Vet clinics and animal control facilities can microchip your cat or dog.

Why should I microchip my pet?

Microchipping is important for all animals, especially cats. After the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake, microchipping was key in reuniting pets with their owners. By law, dogs must be microchipped once they are three months old.

What does an Inspector do?

An Animal Welfare Inspector is responsible for investigating and taking appropriate action in any situation where an animal is being mistreated and not being provided with 'The Five Freedoms'. An Inspector holds a legal warrant under the Animal Welfare Act to take action in these situations. This warrant allows Inspectors to carry out a number of legal actions under the law such as entering someone's property, examining and assessing animals, seizing or uplifting animals that are not being cared for, prosecuting in a court of law, and other legal actions relating to enforcing and upholding the rights of all animals.

How can I become an Inspector?

If you are interested in becoming an Inspector you first need to gain a Certificate in Animal Welfare Investigations. Once you have completed the course you will be able to apply for an Inspector position in an approved welfare organisation such as SPCA Marlborough. All Inspectors need to be approved and warranted by MAF. SPCA Marlborough then needs to apply to MAF for an Inspector warrant. Only after all these things have been approved, can an Inspector enforce the Animal Welfare Act.

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