A dog shelter in Galway says it is overwhelmed with requests for a discount due to the soaring cost of living.
Madra serves counties Galway and Mayo where many people simply cannot afford to care for a pet and the housing crisis means others cannot find pet-friendly accommodation:
“Everyone is fighting in the country,” Madra founder Marina Fiddler said. Newstalk.
“The consequences of COVID are really showing up now and there is more to come.
“But everything that happens to people also happens to animals; so if there are more people in financial difficulty or suffering from anxiety or poor health, all of this carries over to the pet dogs as well.
“So we’re seeing the results of that now.”
Vet bills often cost thousands of dollars, and as people’s incomes shrink, even paying for routine medications becomes a struggle:
“We’ve had a few vets contact us when the dog’s owner can’t afford basic vet care,” she said wearily.
“They cannot afford to pay their veterinary insurance premiums. The ripple effect is that more and more dogs have problems.
Another problem for the charity is that many dogs are unaccustomed to people – having spent much of their lives in confinement – and therefore have behavioral issues:
“They take so long that it creates a huge backlog in the system,” she said wearily.
“I just don’t know where this is going to end.
“If you thought it was going to end soon, you could smile and bear it, but the idea that it’s been relentless for the past six months and shows no signs of letting up – that’s a huge concern. .”
Main image: A puppy in a dog shelter. Photo by: SHELTER DOGS / Alamy Stock Photo