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Over 600 cats and dogs rehomed by ISPCA following closure of research facility

The charity is still seeking homes for nine beagle dogs and fifteen cats.

OVER 600 dogs and cats have been rehomed by the ISPCA following the closure of a research facility in Co Mayo.

A total of 603 animals – 346 dogs and 257 cats – were rescued.

janis HT One of the beagles that has been rehomed by the ISPCA Source: ISPCA

The ISPCA was first approached by Charles River Laboratories in August 2016 to discuss the possibility of rehoming as many of the animals as possible. Following a series of meetings, an agreement was research on the most effective way of rehoming the animals.

Animal care staff were retained after the closure of the facility to enable the animals to be cared for until they could be processed for release.

All the dogs and cats had to be neutered, microchipped, vaccinated and health checked by veterinary surgeons before they could be removed from the facility for rehoming.

Many of the dogs also required to be socialised before being introduced to their new environment. This included training the dogs to walk on a leash.

A new outdoor exercise area was created, complete with a living room equipped with a sofa and television so that the dogs could adapt to their new homes in due course.

Annie rehoming This is Annie, another one of the rehomed beagles Source: ISPCA

The ISPCA said it realised that it would be difficult to deal with such a large number of dogs and cats and called on Dogs Trust Ireland and Cats Protection for their assistance.

The process began in December 2016 when a small number of animals (10 dogs and 12 cats) were removed initially on a trial basis and transported to the ISPCA’s National Animal Centre in Longford. It has taken over 12 months to remove all the animals from the facility.

“The sheer volume of animals removed naturally put a strain on our resources and it was challenging at times but also hugely rewarding. When we receive photos and wonderful updates sent from the new pet owners… it is truly moving,” ISPCA centre manager Eva Ellis said.

Sugar 01 And this is Sugar, one of the rehomed cats Source: ISPCA

The ISPCA expressed its gratitude to the public who responded to its appeal for homes.

The charity is still seeking homes for nine beagle dogs and fifteen cats.

“The ISPCA is appealing to anyone looking to get a new pet to always consider adopting from a rescue rather than buying one,” a statement from the charity said.

For more information, people can contact the ISPCA on 043 332 5035 or info@ispca.ie.

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