Surge in pet ownership sees RSPCA rehome more than 500 animals in Nottinghamshire

The RSPCA is highlighting the importance of our pets’ mental wellbeing following a surge in pet ownership since the pandemic began

Friday, 8th October 2021, 5:00 pm

This month marks Adoptober, when the charity urges people to Adopt Don’t Shop and shines a light on rescue animals looking for forever homes.

The past year has seen a huge surge in pet ownership and the RSPCA rehomed 28,740 animals in 2020, with 533 rehomed in Nottinghamshire.

With the number of pets in the UK rising it’s now more important than ever for people to make sure they understand how their pets are feeling so that we keep our pets happy and healthy.

As dog owners go back to offices, the charity is concerned that some canines may struggle to adapt to being left alone for short periods.

Dr Sam Gaines, head of the companion animals team at the RSPCA, said: “There has been a boom in pet ownership during the pandemic and whilst it’s great to see so many pets becoming a real source of comfort during the last year, it’s important that we remember that our mental health can impact on that of our pets and we need to make sure we consider their mental health and know how they are feeling.

“From changes in their behaviour to their body language, our pets can give us insight into their mental wellbeing and it’s important that as pet owners we know how to spot these signs and act on them.”

As dog owners go back to offices, the charity is concerned that some dogs may struggle to adapt to being left alone for short periods. One of the major reasons that dogs are relinquished is due to behaviour problems and research suggests that 85 per cent of dogs may be affected by separation related behaviours.

The body language of a worried or unhappy dog include:

They are standing but their body posture and head position is low. The tail is tucked under, ears are back and the dog is yawning.

The body language of a happy dog include:

The dog has a relaxed body posture, smooth hair, mouth open and relaxed, their ears are in a natural position, with a wagging tail.

The body language of a worried or unhappy cat include:

They are in a crouched position, muscles are tense, body is held tightly, their tail is tucked tightly into their body, and the ears are slightly swivelled sideways. Their head is slightly lowered and tucked into the body, pupils are dilated, and mild tension shows in their face.

The body language of a happy cat include:

The cat is lying down, belly is exposed, body posture is relaxed, body is stretched out, ears are in natural position, eyes may be partly closed, mouth is closed.

For more information about Adoptober, visit www.rspca.org.uk/Adoptober

To see the animals for rehoming visit www.rspca.org.uk/findapet

To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming visit website or call 0300 123 8181.

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