Worst places for animal cruelty revealed by RSPCA

There have been 1,000s of reports of animal cruelty in Suffolk and Essex over the last five years

There have been 1,000s of reports of animal cruelty in Suffolk and Essex over the last five years - Credit: RSPCA

The RSPCA received more than 3,000 reports of animal cruelty over the last five years in Suffolk and Essex.

Essex was the ninth highest area for animal cruelty reports in England and Wales, with a total of 2,623 reports made to the RSPCA over the past five years.

Suffolk had fewer reports of intentional harm to animals, with 1,025 reports in the last half-decade.

The RSPCA said the horrific incidents they deal with include beatings, knife crime, drowning and intentional killing.

Dermot Murphy, head of RSPCA animal rescue teams, said: “We always sadly see a rise in cruelty during the summer months. As well as more people being out and about in the longer sunny days, seeing and reporting abuse, we feel there are a number of factors, which contribute to this rise.

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“Unfortunately, the hot summer days can lead to more people drinking alcohol in the sun which can be a factor in causing violence. There could also be boredom during the long holidays and more pressures at home - when the whole family is on holiday from school and work, existing difficulties in the home can be magnified. During these hot months, calls to our cruelty line rise, putting more pressure on our already stretched frontline rescue teams.

“Police forces reported a rise in domestic violence last year during lockdown and we are concerned that similar pressures which led to this rise may also have impacted on more cruelty to animals behind closed doors during the pandemic.

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“The past year has seen a reportedly huge rise in pet ownership and we know most people would not dream of harming an animal. However, we are concerned that, as we come out of lockdown and people return to their jobs outside the home or suffer financial pressures, we will see more animals suffer if their owners find themselves unable to cope."

The RSPCA urged people in Suffolk and Essex to support its campaign to Cancel Out Cruelty and to continue to report any incidents of animal cruelty.

You can do this by calling the RSPCA's hotline on 0300 1234 999.

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