OF all the pets at all the animal shelters across Perth hoping to find a new home for Christmas, Winnie the mastiff is the one most crying out.
The pocket-rocket of a mastiff has boundless energy that belies her three-legged stature – an unfortunate legacy from being hit by a car when younger, but not one that slows her down her energy or happiness in life.
Now aged five, Winnie has been with the RSPCA WA for four months, is desexed and in full health.
She enjoys challenges and particularly food puzzles that keep her occupied when she’s home alone.
Community News has joined with RSPCA WA to try to find each of these 12 strays of Christmas – along with many other dogs, cats, birds, rabbits and other animals – a new family.
This Christmas close to 300 abandoned, abused and neglected animals will be in the care of RSPCA WA, with many ready for adoption.
While authorities often warn that pet ownership is a long-term commitment and therefore animals are not necessarily a wise Christmas gift, the holiday period can be an ideal time to take on a pet.
“With many people having more time off work over Christmas, this provides a great opportunity to help a new pet settle in, spending more time with them and allowing you to bond,” RSPCA WA executive manager of community engagement Maree Daniels said.
“It’s never a good idea however to buy any pet as a gift for someone else.
“For children, the novelty factor of a new pet can wear off pretty quickly, and it’s often Mum and Dad who are left to take care of the animal’s needs at the end of the school holidays.”
People who are not in a position to adopt a new pet but still want to help a homeless animal can support the RSPCA’s Guardian Angel Christmas Appeal.
Visit the RSPCA’s website to donate and choose the type of animal you would like to become a Guardian Angel for, and you’ll be matched up with one of the animals at RSPCA WA’s animal care centre in Malaga.
You’ll then be able to log-in to the Guardian Angel website to learn more about the animal you’re protecting, including why they needed to be rescued by the RSPCA.
DON’T JUST JUMP IN
– Do your research – find out as much as you can about the type of animal you’re looking to get, paying particular attention to the level of care required and the costs involved.
– Think about the future – some pets can live for more than 20 years so you should take both your short-term and long-term family circumstances into consideration before making the big commitment.
– Adopt don’t shop – There are thousands of animals in shelters across WA waiting for a new home and a second chance. If you do choose to get a new pet from somewhere else, check where the animal is coming from to ensure you’re not supporting an irresponsible backyard breeder or puppy farmer.
– Consider the Christmas effect – if you’re going away it’s probably not the best time to bring a new pet into your family, as they really need time to bond with you. Similarly, if you’re having lots of guests over at Christmas, this can be quite stressful for animals, particularly if they are just starting to settle into their new home. You may prefer to wait until the New Year.
Bowie. 2 months old, male kitten. Bowie is a shy boy, but once he comes out of his shell he’s a lively and cheeky kitten who loves climbing and all things food. He’s incredibly close with his sister Pom Pom so the two should be adopted together.
Monty. 5 years and 9 months old, male car. Monty is a handsome, friendly boy who loves to cuddle.
Martin. 3 months old, male rabbit. Martin and his mum Maureen are looking for a new home where they can stay together. Martin’s favourite things in life include the sun, pats, cuddles and playing in hay.
Maureen. 2 years and 3 months old, female rabbit. Maureen would love to bring her son Martin to her new home. She is adventurous, energetic, affectionate and loves eating grass and veggies. She is litter trained and loves sleeping next to you, so life as an indoor bunny would make Maureen happy.
Nigel. 1 year and 3 months old, male rabbit. Nigel has a lovely nature and enjoys a good pat and a scratch. He seeks the simple things in life, like fresh veggies, pellets and hay.
William. Rooster. William is very much in love with Katherine the hen, and the love birds come as a bonded pair.
Katherine. Female chicken. Katherine and William are inseparable so they do need to be rehomed as a couple.
Winnie. 5 years and 3 months old, female mastiff. Winnie is an energetic girl, who sadly lost her leg after being hit by a car – but that doesn’t slow her down at all. She enjoys challenges, particularly food puzzles that keep her occupied when she’s home alone.
Lawson. 2 months old, male greyhound cross. Lawson is a handsome boy with plenty of energy, but he’s quick to settle down when there’s a tummy rub on offer.
Vanessa. 2 months old, female greyhound cross. Vanessa is a very active pup who loves to play, but when she’s feeling calm she loves nothing more than to cuddle.
Bullet. 6 years old, male kelpie. Bullet is a family man who loves toys and wants to be by your side at all times.
Jojo. 2 months old, male kitten. Jojo’s idea of a perfect day involves purring the day away curled up on someone’s lap.
Our 12 strays of Christmas are all available from the RSPCA WA adoption centre in Malaga.
Through no fault of their own, they’re each seeking a new home and family for Christmas.
Call the adoptions team on 9209 9323 or just drop in to the shelter to meet them.