FENLAND: Dogs abandoned along drain road, after Labrador is found with suspected broken leg
UNWANTED dogs are being dumped – and risk being killed or maimed by motorists – beside the Sixteen Foot Bank near Bedlam Bridge, March. Jenny Watson is now pleading with owners to take their dogs to shelters, rather than throwing them out of cars outside
UNWANTED dogs are being dumped - and risk being killed or maimed by motorists - beside the Sixteen Foot Bank near Bedlam Bridge, March.
Jenny Watson is now pleading with owners to take their dogs to shelters, rather than throwing them out of cars outside her home.
"This situation is of great concern to us as dogs are clearly being abandoned on this stretch of road," said an RSPCA spokeswoman.
"Those responsible should be aware that they could face a maximum six-month prison sentence and/or a �20,000 fine if found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal."
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Mrs Watson's plea and the RSPCA's concern came hours after Cambs Times editor John Elworthy hit one of two Labradors dogs straddling the centre of the road shortly after 7.30pm on Tuesday on the same stretch of road.
"Suddenly there were these two dogs right in front of me and despite breaking fast and furiously I fear I clipped a rear leg," he said.
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Mr Elworthy pulled up and helped Mrs Watson and her partner try to find the dogs to see if they were injured. Police were called and they, too, joined the hunt but without success.
However, the following day a fresh search was carried out by neighbours and shortly before 4pm the injured dog was found and the RSPCA and Fenland District Council called to help. It has a suspected broken leg.
Mrs Watson, of the Old Wheatsheaf, believes the problems of abandoned dogs "is going to cause accidents and someone will end up in the river.
"Somewhere out there are dogs running around loose. We don't know if they are ok or not."
Mrs Watson, 58, used to help the RSPCA rehome dogs, but was forced to give it up two-and-a-half years ago.
Tuesday's incident was the second time in two weeks that dogs were abandoned outside her home.
She said: "The same thing happened last week - and both had been hit. A greyhound was found in hedges behind our home and the neighbours on the other side of the river found a boxer down the river bank. They were both injured."
Both dogs were taken to Tejaycey, in Wisbech, for treatment but Mrs Watson thinks they had not been fed for several weeks.
Mrs Watson added: "I do not want to see anyone going in the river because of someone kicking their dog out of a car, but that will happen if this continues."
Vanessa Castillo-Roman, Fenland District Council's animal welfare officer, said: "We are aware of the problem and do all we can to tackle it. In fact, we picked up two dogs from that area last week - a black and white greyhound and a boxer bitch - and we have local residents keeping their eyes open and notifying us.
"If you see a stray dog, it is important to phone us immediately, so that we can get someone out to look for it. If you are able to pick it up safely, do so and phone us: we will come and collect it as soon as possible.
"The council makes every effort to reunite dogs with their owners. Failing that, we will find a home for it. We don't destroy dogs.
"Anyone seeing a dog running loose should phone us on 01354 654321 and ask to speak to environmental services.
"Meanwhile, we strongly urge people not to abandon their dogs. If they are having problems with them, they should contact the RSPCA or Wood Green Animal Centre."
The RSPCA spokeswoman added: "It is never acceptable to dump animals - anyone who feels they cannot cope with the care of their pets should always contact someone for help instead of leaving them somewhere to become sick, injured or worse.
"Anyone with information should contact the RSPCA in confidence on 0300 1234 999. The council has dealt with the healthy stray animals, but the RSPCA can help with calls regarding sick or injured animals on 0300 1234 999.