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TEARS Animal Rescue highlights violence against animals in low income communities

Pandora the cat had to have both eyes amputated after being shot at close range with a pellet gun and being found in Retreat.

Pandora the cat had to have both eyes amputated after being shot at close range with a pellet gun and being found in Retreat.

Published Aug 30, 2021

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Cape Town - TEARS Animal Rescue has called for compassion, education and training for pet owners in low-income communities in order to reduce violence against animals.

This after an increase in animal abuse and neglect cases came under the spotlight, when an Ocean View man was charged with bestiality after sexually violating the family dog last week.

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TEARS Operations Manager Mandy Store said they were seeing an increase in the number of animal abuse and neglect, especially cases involving minors which could only be countered through compassion education, pet care training and youth enrichment at a grassroots level.

TEARS Fundraising Head Lara Van Rensburg said they had received funding to launch a pilot Community Education and Pet Care Training Programme in Vrygrond in September.

It will combine curriculum based and in-the-field learning in the form of weekly educational and dog training workshops at Capricorn Primary School for children, to help them become “ambassadors” for animals and consider careers in the animal welfare sector, which would provide an alternative to gangs, drugs and violence.

“The Programme will include free sterilisation and vaccination of dogs and cats within the area to pro-actively prevent the spread of infectious animal diseases and curtail illegal breeding,” said Van Rensburg.

“The TEARS Veterinary Clinic was recently forced to remove both eyes of a female cat, Pandora, which had been found in Retreat after being shot at close range with a pellet gun. While Pandora was fortunate to survive and has since been adopted by her rescuers, the perpetrators have never been caught,” said Store.

Cape of Good Hope SPCA spokesperson Belinda Abraham said dog fighting in disadvantaged communities needed greater attention, as their inspectorate division was inundated with cases of juvenile offenders involved in horrific crimes against animals, underlining the importance of their Humane Education Programme.

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Those interested in donating to TEARS to help extend its education mandate and reach more at-risk youth, should visit https://tears.org.za/community-education.

[email protected]

Cape Argus

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