Life of fighting over for rescued pit bull
By Okuhle Hlati and Lisa Daniels
Cape Town – Rehabilitation will soon start for Anthana, a female pit bull rescued from a life of pain and misery as a fighting dog in Hanover Park.
Anthana was removed by the Cape of Good Hope (CoGH) SPCA’s chief inspector Jaco Pieterse and colleague Siviwe Noko from a home in the area on Tuesday following a tip-off.
“We received information and evidence of this illegal and brutal act. After investigating the matter we obtained a court order from Wynberg Magistrate’s Court to remove the dog.
“At this stage, we cannot confirm if the dog was stolen and used for the illegal sport of dog fighting, bearing in mind that stolen dogs are generally only used as bait to train other dogs.
“Fighting dogs are trained over a period of time and conditioned into fighters,” said Pieterse.
He said although they don’t know how long Anthana suffered, she has evidence of repeated scarring visible all over her face and front legs, which is indicative that the dog was used for regular fighting.
“The SPCA will be laying charges of illegal animal fighting against the owner in due course.
“The owner could face up to two years imprisonment and/or a fine of up to R80000 with a criminal record if found guilty in terms of the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962.
To report dog fighting in your community, contact the CoGH SPCA on 0217004158/9 or 0833261604 (A/H).
Separately, the society says it has implemented cost-cutting measures, including putting development projects on hold, cancelling outsourced services and foregoing staff increases to mitigate the impact of Covid-19.
Chief executive Mqabuko Ndukwana said that 2019/20 saw staff working harder than ever.
“With the last month of the financial year drawing to a close under lockdown conditions resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, there is no doubt that we as a society face difficult times ahead.
“With international trends post-Covid-19 predicting a 43% decline in charitable donations and a 48% growth in demand for services, we immediately implemented cost- cutting measures to secure organisational sustainability throughout the crisis period.”
These included placing development projects on hold to massively reduce capital expenditure; the cancellation of outsourced services and a review of services which have been brought in-house; and the implementation of major cost control and revenue generation measures in the facility’s hospital.
During the last year, the dedicated CoGH SPCA inspectorate team reached more than 44 453 animals, attended to 6 759 cruelty investigations and issued 1 307 warnings to improve the living and physical conditions of animals.
A total of 220 animals were confiscated from deplorable conditions, while 30 cases of animal cruelty were opened against animal abusers with police and are pending prosecution.
Ndukwana also highlighted that there had been a 38.7% increase in the number of lost animals reunited with their owners, and a 36.1% increase in the number of companion animals treated via the mobile clinic programme.
According to the report, 71.4% of the organisation’s funding comes from individuals, totalling R13 148 444.32, with a further 28.6% funding from corporates, trusts and foundations totalling R5 386 221.30.
The facility’s hospital currently operates with four qualified vets, 12 animal welfare assistants, 12 ward orderlies and eight mobile clinic operators who together, treated and cared for 43 392 animals in the 2019/20 financial year. The organisation has also sterilised 6 974 animals.
To donate to the CoGH SPCA, visit https://capespca.co.za/donate/