ACCORDING to latest figures from the RSPCA WA, the City of Swan received 745 animal cruelty reports in the last financial year.
This was the highest number of reports of any local government in the metro area and an increase of 15 per cent for the City on the previous year.
Stephen Cain, City of Swan chief executive officer, said the city did not condone animal cruelty of any kind and was disappointed by the increased number of reports.
“However, the city is the largest local government by land size in Perth with a blend of residential, commercial and rural areas, meaning a wide range of animals are kept.
“This includes domestic animals and livestock related to a range of industries. This may contribute to the number of animal cruelty reports.”
He added that as identified by the RSPCA, cost-of-living pressures may have contributed to the increase in animal cruelty reports.
“However, with options available to re-home animals, there is no excuse for this type of behaviour.
“The City of Swan’s community safety ranger team reports any animal welfare concerns that are identified as part of their investigations to the RSPCA, who have the lead role in managing these investigations.
“The city also encourages the community to continue to report any concerns directly to the RSPCA.”
RSPCA WA chief executive officer Ben Cave said the cost-of-living crisis was the key theme across Perth’s metro and regional areas in 2022-23, with reports about owners failing to seek vet care increasing by 18 per cent compared to 2021/22.
“Meanwhile, reports of animals without enough food or water were up 22 per cent,” he said.
“On the surface these reports might seem less serious than violent acts of cruelty, but the sad reality is, the animals in these cases have often suffered day-in, day-out for weeks or months.
“We understand owners fall on hard financial times but ignoring your pet’s pain or hunger is not a solution, it’s animal cruelty.”
Mr Cave said RSPCA WA had ramped up events to help struggling pet owners.
“In hotspots where cruelty is prevalent, we work hard to improve standards of animal welfare, but we’re still getting a consistently high number of calls,” he said.
To contact the RSPCA helpline call 1300 278 358, or visit their website here.