A LOCAL animal rescue agency says kittens are “flying out the door” as singles and families seek the companionship of pets to help them through the COVID-19 crisis.
South Gippsland Animal Aid has observed a significant increase in adoption enquiries in recent weeks, with most of their rescue dogs successfully rehomed, as well as many kittens and adult cats.
A spokesperson for the not-for-profit organisation said kittens were always popular, and in plentiful supply, but it was unusual for their surrendered adult mothers to be adopted at an equally fast rate.
All but two of the rescue dogs on the books have also found new homes in the past two weeks, the spokesperson said, including several “difficult” dogs that had been with their volunteer foster carers for some time.
The volunteers have linked the surge in demand to people spending more time at home since the introduction of social distancing measures to slow the spread of COVID-19.
But they’re confident their adoptees have gone to loving homes that will keep them around long after things return to ‘normal’.
“People probably do need the company at the moment – they’re trying to make the best of a bad situation. But I don’t think we’ll see lots of animals coming back to us in six months’ time,” the spokesperson said.
“Most of them have gone to people we know, from the local area, and we know they’re dedicated and not just doing it impulsively.”
Anyone considering introducing a furry friend to their home was encouraged to look to rescue agencies first, with no need to fear taking on ‘damaged goods’.
“Anyone can buy a puppy for $2000 or $3000, but there’s so much to be said for taking on a ‘recycled’ pet – they’ve got so much love to give,” the Animal Aid spokesperson said.
“Even if they have a got couple of hang ups, often all they need is a loving, caring environment, and, for dogs, a little bit of basic training.”
To find out more about South Gippsland Animal Aid, head to facebook.com/SthGippyAnimalAid.