Trevor Prentis, who was a police officer for 23 years before a career change about five months ago, made his first solo rescue in July when a cruelty complaint was made about a pet owner at a Herne Hill home.
When Mr Prentis arrived there, he found an 18-month-old white Staffordshire bull terrier cross that was starving, weighing only 14kg and deaf.
The owner agreed to surrender the dog and ‘Trevor’ the dog ” affectionately named after his rescuer ” was taken into RSPCA’s care where his weight recovered to 17kg before he was re-homed with a Thornlie family.
The dog’s weight is now at a much healthier 20kg, he has settled in with his new family and has been signed up for RSPCA dog training, which will involve him learning hand signals.
Mr Prentis, whose love for animals was a factor in his decision to change careers, said seeing Trevor in the state he was found in was confronting.
‘At the time of the seizure, Trevor was very emaciated, with his ribs showing,’ he said. ‘I went to feed him some biscuits and he jumped up to get the food out of my hands ” he was that hungry.’
In his short time with the RSPCA, Mr Prentis said the scenario was all too common.
‘We see this all the time, it comes up weekly,’ he said.
‘But this is a rewarding job because you get a sense that you are actually helping the animals.’
RSPCA spokesman Tim Mayne said the RSPCA was seeking donations throughout this month as part of its Cupcake Day fundraiser.
‘It costs $8 million to fund the RSPCA annually, with only $500,000 coming from the State Government,’ he said.
‘That half a million goes into community education and keeping our inspectors, like Mr Prentis, on the road rescuing dogs like Trevor.’
For more information about the Cupcake appeal or to donate, go to rspcacupcakeday.com.au